Dallas-based non-profit U&I recently was awarded a Federal grant totaling nearly $1 million over the next three years to provide case management, training, employment, and support services to homeless veterans helping them obtain good jobs so they can transition from homelessness to self-sufficiency.
“Many of our veterans return home only to find themselves living on the streets or in low-income areas without access to transportation,” said U&I CEO Hugh Breland. “U&I provides training, employment, housing, transportation and education for veterans in need.”
The Homeless Veterans’ Reintegration Program (HVRP) from the Department of Labor’s Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (VETS) will serve veterans in Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Kaufman, Rockwall, and Tarrant Counties.
“U&I has committed to serve a minimum of 220 total homeless vets,” explained Breland. “We will place at least 175 of these vets in livable wage jobs during the three-year term of this grant.”
Services provided will include veteran and employer outreach; recruitment and engagement; intake and assessment; case management; job readiness training; computer lab certifications and assistance; American Job Center (Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas) Services; support groups; monthly bus passes; agency-provided training; job placement assistance; work-required equipment, tools, and clothing; service referrals; and ongoing job support.
U&I will host a Veteran’s Job Fair on Wednesday, November 1st from 9 am – Noon at U&I’s headquarters, located at 8800 Ambassador Row in Dallas. U&I will also provide free breakfast between 7:30 am – 8:30 am, fully-loaded backpack care packs, raffle prizes, various job opportunities, and a hot lunch. Veterans seeking employment assistance or in need of resources are encouraged to attend the highly anticipated job fair.
U&I has a long history of serving youth, adults and veterans with disabilities. In 1951, Jean Walker Bentley overcame cultural barriers and spoke out for children with disabilities and their families. She started the Children’s Development Center to meet the scholastic and socialization needs of children with special needs. In 1981, the federal government mandated that public schools have the responsibility to educate children with disabilities. The Center transitioned to provide work readiness and job placement services for individuals with disabilities. The organization has continued to evolve to help veterans find employment and supply vocational training for special education students preparing to transition out of high school.
Today, as one of the largest workforce development centers in DFW, serving more than 1,000 individuals annually, U&I’s programs enable primarily low-income individuals with disabilities, including veterans with disabilities, to achieve economic self-sufficiency by providing them with job readiness training, job placement services, case management, education and support necessary to achieve work success, escape poverty and live an independent and purposeful life. More information about U&I is available at uandispreadthelight.com.