MAY 2, 2023 | by Maddie Gittens
A long-established veteran support organization cut the ribbon on its new facility on Tuesday.
Philadelphia-based Veterans Multi-Service Center celebrated the opening of its downtown Harrisburg office, which provides assistance to low-income and homeless veterans.
“It’s really to give veterans a hand up rather than a handout,” said Ryan McGoldrick, deputy executive director of mission execution for VMC. “They really need someone to help guide them.”
VMC officially moved into the new center, located at 21 S. 3rd St., in September and has already served over 100 veterans and their families, according to officials.
The organization, which got its start in 1980, assists over 6,500 veteran households each year across its 10 East Coast locations and expects to add another 150 to that yearly number with the addition of the Harrisburg office.
The resource center helps underserved veterans with services like housing, food security, transportation, employment, accessing veterans and social services and pro bono legal services. According to McGoldrick, veterans make up a large portion of the homeless population in the U.S.
With several centers already in the commonwealth, VMC saw expanding into Harrisburg as a natural fit and a way to address a lack of veteran services in the area, McGoldrick explained.
The new three-story center includes staff offices and meeting rooms where clients can work with staff and case managers to create a support plan. There is also a women veterans closet on site, with toiletries and household items for those in need.
Veterans in need of assistance can walk into the center, visit the website or call 844-226-0368. Those experiencing homelessness should call 2-1-1 and veterans will be connected with VMC.
“They served us so we want to serve them,” said Lincoln Strehle, deputy executive director of business operations.