(March 12, 2012)

Centenary junior promotes Veterans Collection Drive & Awareness Seminar

SHREVEPORT, LA — Centenary junior Dessie Clark, in partnership with the Volunteers of America (VOA), will host an awareness benefit Saturday, March 17, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. in Kilpatrick Auditorium on Centenary's campus. The benefit will collect donations of toiletries or monetary contributions on behalf of the Shreveport Veteran's Transitional Living Program, which assists homeless veterans in northern Louisiana.

Soldier and Flag Image

"I wanted to help out, but I wanted to do it in the best way I could,"said Clark. "I have a lot of military in my family, and when I started to look for programs, I found the Veterans Transitional Living Program. My overall goal is to get as much community involvement as possible."

Speakers from the VOA will discuss volunteer opportunities within their organization and on behalf of the Transitional Living Program. A graduate of the program will share his personal story and answer questions. Local restaurants will provide free refreshments, and Centenary students will showcase live music.

About 180 homeless veterans live in northwest Louisiana on any given day. The Veterans Transitional Living Program serves veterans in the Shreveport and surrounding area. The 56-bed program provides the basics of food, shelter and support, and health needs are taken care of by the VA.

As veterans progress through the program, they move into apartments next door and then into the community. The Transitional Living Program is dependent upon donations, grants, United Way, and other charitable funds to assist with day-to-day living expenses.

In 2010-11, the Veterans Transitional Living Program served 101 veterans and successfully transitioned 33 veterans to independent living.

For more information or to make a donation before the event, contact Dessie Clark at email. Any questions regarding opportunities to serve the VOA can be directed to Carolyn Hammond, 318.221.5000.