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Charles Peterson - A Homeless Veteran Success Story

Introduction

In February of 2021, Charles joined the Easterseals Oregon Homeless Veterans’ Reintegration Program (HVRP). His service in the armed forces was as an Aircraft Structures Mechanic in the United States Marine Corps, and he was honorably discharged in 2009. Since being honorably discharged, Charles ran into multiple setbacks that prevented him from maintaining reliable housing or employment. Despite this, when our team met him, it was vey clear that Charles was very driven to secure sustainable employment, but he had a few barriers, such as a lack of interview clothing, no reliable transportation, and no means to pay for his OLCC (Oregon Liquor Control Commission, later renamed to Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission) permit after he passed the licensing exam.

A Collaborative Effort

After enrolling, Charles worked diligently with the Easterseals Oregon team to build his resume and complete the steps to achieve job readiness. While enrolled in our Homeless Veteran Reintegration Program (HVRP), Charles was also working closely with our Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) team to secure safe and reliable housing. His HVRP Employment Specialist teamed up with his Case Manager from our SSVF team to ensure that his employer interactions were strategic and successful, and his Employment Specialist was able to help him secure a bus pass to ensure reliable transportation to and from employment opportunities.

A New Beginning

On March 24th 2021, Charles landed a job through Express Employment Services, and he began working full-time at PakTech for $13.50 an hour. Charles told his Employment Specialist that this new role is a great fit; and in addition to the financial stability, he is enjoying his new career very much. We are absolutely elated to celebrate the success and financial equity you've created for yourself with our assistance, Charles!

Conclusion

Charles credits Easterseals Oregon with keeping him accountable in his job search. He told his Employment Developer “You guys gave me the motivation and everything that it took, you know, for me to get up and actually try and find something.” Charles says that his experience with the HVRP has been overall positive. “You guys have helped me out in a lot of ways,” he said. “It was genuinely more than I ever expected.”


If you or anyone you know is a US Military Veteran who is homeless or at risk of homelessness, please contact us by clicking here to learn how we can help!

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