Veterans, officials and residents gathered Saturday morning for the grand opening of the Santa Clarita Veterans Services Collaborative in Newhall.
The collaborative stands as a place where veterans from anywhere can come for support, supplies or just somewhere where they can spend time and talk with other veterans.
“If a veteran needs help, any kind of help, medical help, dental help, help with your taxes, help with therapy, anything,(veterans) can come in,” said Elliott Wolfe, president of the Santa Clarita Veterans Services Collaborative. “If a veteran is hungry and needs food, then we have the food pantry here. Whatever a veteran needs we can provide it. That’s the bottoms line.”
Assemblyman Dante Acosta and Congressman Steve Knight awarded the collaborative and veterans certificates for their service.
In addition, city councilmembers Bob Kellar and Marsha McLean awarded Wolfe with an official city certificate for service to veterans and the opening of the collaborative.
During the opening ceremony, veterans arrived from places as far out as Corona and Victorville to show their support.
The Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association also arrived to support the opening of the facility.
Combat member Bob Tolliver explained, “Our motto is Vets helping Vets… to be able to come and give support to these young guys who are coming back from four or five tours in Afghanistan or Iraq, to show them that there’s someone here who care about them and knows what they’ve gone through and who’s lived it, and knows we’ll support them in any way we can — thats whats important.”
An effort three years in the making, Toni Perkins, manager of the Home Depot on Newhall Ranch Road, offered to refurbish the entire unit with all donated supplies.
“When we can help veterans it’s great,” she said, “what we hope that we will get out of this outreach is that we will get to help veterans with their homes.”
Perkins, along with five other Home Depot volunteers, donated their time to install new flooring, appliances and paint.
The collaborative is open Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and located at 23222 Lyons Avenue.