I was a resident at the Richards House for several months. Though I have been introduced to many resources, the top management treats us coldly. VOC might be a nonprofit, but everything is about money. I sometimes wonder if the donations have become more important than the veterans. Quite often the homeless vets at the Richards House are ordered to attend public VOC functions so we can be used as human advertisements for donations. Recently, Todd Baxter authorized the Richards House to be used as a training pit for Rochester police department's K-9 units. One day the police arrived and ordered the residents out of the house and commenced to search all the sleeping quarters. There was no explanation from the police or the VOC staff. Furthermore, there were no warrants. Does the 4th amendment not count if you are a vulnerable homeless veteran? Why didn't CEO T. Baxter have the police ransack his home, or one of the board members? Did management assume that because many of us suffer from mental disabilities (PTSD) , substance abuse and homelessness that we shouldn't have a voice nor basic rights under the constitution? Does the right to privacy under the 4th amendment not apply to us because we are too weak and desperate? Why should the veterans be exploited to benefit the establishment? Most veterans have been through hell and back... we came to you (VOC) for help, instead we became your pawns.
The Veteran's Outreach Center is a great, free-of-charge institution to help any veteran who is in need of help to better integrate in society. They provide services such as housing, financial assistance, job training, and many others. In addition, a Stars and Stripes flag store is available to celebrate any patriotic occasion as well as a great way to contribute to this organization. A e-commerce site is also available at http://www.eflagstore.com/. Please support this incredible organization!
Review from Guidestar
I have been familiar and involved with the Veterans Outreach Center (VOC) in Rochester over 25 years. It's success in serving veterans of all eras and their families I believe is unparrelled in the entire country. The growth from a shared house offering limited services to now multi building complexes with continual foot traffic shows not only the need for services, but how the VOC has expanded to meet them. Rochester can be truly proud of not only the staff/operations of the VOC, but the volunteers and cooperative financial support of so many organizations the keep it functioning. VOC closes gaps of service for our veterans. One of a kind, it is a one stop veteran's needs shoping. Being a veteran in Rochester, means help is available without charge whenever needed. If you don't know where to start at the VOC, ask for Jocene Henderson ..she will make sure your needs are addressed.
Jocene Henderson of the Veterans Outreach Center (VOC) has been a tireless, dynamic champion for those who served our nation here in the Rochester, NY area. I first met Jocey as a guest at the Veterans Business Council of which VOC is an active supporter. Jocey later invited me to a meeting VOC was working as part of the Help Base Rochester project to engage the faith community of Rochester in HBR's initiative. The VOC is a stronger, more vibrant organization through the direct activities of Jocey and her team. I highly recommend VOC as a charitable not for profit with a focused mission here in the local community.