Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti made a bold promise in 2014 when he pledged to provide accommodation for all the citys homeless veterans by the end of the next calendar year. Shortly after making the promise, it was clear that the ambitious timeline, though admirable, wasnt feasible. Los Angeles suffers from a homelessness epidemic, and even with a concerted effort by the government, the issue plaguing disenfranchised veterans would take longer to solve.
However, the city and charitable groups such as Step Up, which has been tackling this very issue for years, didnt get discouraged. They got creative instead.
During the evolution of the Los Angeles cityscape, many once-viable motels and lodges have fallen into disrepair and abandonment. Seeing these structures as yet another opportunity, Step Up began transforming one such property, utilizing civic incentives.
Not only does Step Ups new Hollywood facility give shelter to displaced veterans, but it also provides humanitarian services ranging from psychiatric care to job search assistance. Further, thanks to vouchers from the Department of Veterans Affairs, those placed in the new projects may reside there for up to 15 years free of charge.