Campaign Helps Homeless Vets Through Care Packages

Campaign Helps Homeless Vets Through Care Packages

A group of volunteers creating care packages for the Wyoming Hawk Campaign take a break for a photo Saturday morning as they made care packages for homeless veterans. SweetwaterNOW photo by Stephanie Peterson

ROCK SPRINGS – An initiative to help homeless veterans is gaining momentum in Sweetwater County after creating 200 winter care packages over the weekend.

A group known as the Wyoming Hawk Campaign put together care packages Saturday. The packages consist of items such as a cup of ramen noodles, a travel coffee mug, instant coffee, tea, socks, beanies, gloves, hand warmers and assorted personal care items tied together inside a hoodie. The group assembled the packages at the American Legion Tom Whitmore Post 28 in Green River.

Braids Roberts, the organizer and founder of the Wyoming Hawk Campaign, said the packages are designed to be portable and only need hot water as gas stations often allow free access to hot water. She worked with the Green River American Legion Auxiliary, as well as the Saddle Lite Saloon, Rock Springs Derby Club, Escape Day Spa and Goodwill as drop off points to gather items donated by Sweetwater county residents and create the packages. The care packages are then distributed both locally and to the VA and state mental hospital. While the packages are made with veterans in mind, Roberts tells people to distribute them to anyone who has a need for one.

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The initiative began about 15 years ago, when Roberts heard about a group of homeless people in Rock Springs. Roberts, then working in the oil and gas industry, decided to help them and gave the group a few things she and her roommate no longer needed. After that experience, Roberts said she discovered the things that a homeless person would want are things that most people have and won’t notice if they’re gone.

“It’s the little things you don’t even really miss that can change the day for someone in need,” she said. 

Roberts said the campaign accepts donations October through January and accepts a wide variety of goods.

Roberts describes the campaign as a community effort and said no one gets paid for their work. Any monetary donations made gets spent on providing more meals and supplies for the packages. Roberts also said she is working towards creating a 501c3 organization for the campaign and hopes to have that accomplished soon.

People interested in helping Roberts and the Wyoming Hawk Campaign can contact her on the facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/VeteransCareCampaign

The following photos are from SweetwaterNOW photographer Stephanie Peterson: