With this year’s Santa Barbara County Veterans Stand Down event less than a month away, about three truckloads of goods were dropped off Wednesday at the Santa Maria Fairpark.
The event, now in its sixth year, is meant to serve homeless and/or at-risk veterans by providing them with a range of goods and services. It will be held this year from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Oct. 21 at the Fairpark, 937 S. Thornburg St.
Among the items that will be made available to veterans are food, clothing and hygiene products. They will also be offered medical, dental and vision screenings, haircuts and showers and the opportunity to learn about programs, including veterans treatment court, California ID cards, housing, employment and training, mental health, legal assistance and social services.
Anyone who would like to donate items for the event can do so from noon to 2 p.m. each of the next three Wednesdays at the Gate 5 entrance of the Fairpark off Stowell Road, according to Sandy Agalos, one of the organizers of the event. Donations can also be dropped off at the Santa Maria and Lompoc chambers of commerce and at the Buellton and Solvang Senior Thrift stores.
Applications for veterans who want to attend the Stand Down are available at www.sbcountystanddown.com or by calling the office of 5th District County Supervisor Steve Lavagnino at 346-8402. Applications can be emailed, mailed or faxed upon request. There is no charge to veterans and their families who attend Stand Down.
Additionally, free shuttles will be provided to and from the event from various locations throughout the county. More information on the shuttle service is available at the above website.
Nearly 600 veterans were served at last year’s event, according to organizers.