Orange County Veterans Initiative

The Orange County Veterans Initiative (OCVI) is a project of the Orange County Community Foundation that identifies the most pressing challenges facing returning veterans and leverages resources to meet those needs.

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Read the Full Report [PDF]

Our Orange County Heroes

2013 Special Report

To protect our freedom, they give up their own.
They leave their families behind.
They put their lives on the line.
They experience untold physical, mental, and emotional trauma.
They watch their friends die.

Then they come home.

They are Orange County’s military veterans. After fighting for our country and our freedom, they deserve to come home to a good job, secure housing, decent education, and help with the aftershocks of war.

Veteran and his dog.
Furnishing Hope helps veterans set up a place to call home. Photo courtesy Cirina Catania

While that is our goal, it is not yet the reality. In Afghanistan and Iraq, the longest wars in U.S. history have taken a huge toll on American service men and women. After coming home to Orange County, too many of our veterans experience anything but a hero’s welcome. Instead, many encounter unemployment, homelessness, poverty and depression.

This we can, and must change.  This report outlines the case for coordinated, county-wide efforts in the areas of employmenthealth and wellness, and education to give our veterans the homecoming they deserve.

In the county they call home.