Mayor Turner Announces Meaningful Change for Veterans

By | June 4, 2017

HOUSTON – Mayor Sylvester Turner announces a $2.3 million mental health grant for local veterans has been secured by the Mayor’s Office of Veterans Affairs. The Texas Veterans + Family Alliance Grant was awarded by the State of Texas Health and Human Services Commission and will fund valuable new programs and services for a community with one of the highest veteran populations in the U.S. The substantial grant also highlights the city’s initiatives which target veterans and the Meaningful Change campaign which aims to end chronic homelessness.

“Wanting to help our veterans is one thing, but actually securing the financial resources to help our veterans is rewarding and impactful,” said Mayor Turner. “City of Houston Office of Veterans Affairs Director Carl Salazar has a commitment for veterans that is incomparable. Our work together will make a significant difference in the lives of people who have sacrificed so much on our behalf.”

The goal of this project is to enhance the quality of life of veterans and their families by providing and coordinating mental health treatment and support services. The collaborative is composed of public and private organizations that will expand and enhance the availability and access to services. While enhancing coordination, and improving services is the main task of this collaborative, this project will also help develop a comprehensive regional system to better align public and private services and address gaps in this region.

The City of Houston will facilitate the grant and oversee the collaboration of providers offering mental health services to veterans and their family members. These partners include traditional mental health providers and other nonprofits offering wellness programs and other services. They include:

  • Combined Arms
  • Gulf Coast Center
  • Grace After Fire
  • Interface Samaritan Counseling Centers
  • Mental Health America of Greater Houston
  • NextOp
  • Spindletop Center
  • Tri-County Behavioral Healthcare
  • UT Health – STARS Clinic

The reach of our partners extends far outside the City of Houston, allowing us to reach veterans and family members throughout Harris, Fort Bend, Brazoria, Galveston, Montgomery, Chambers, Walker, Waller, Jefferson, Hardin and Orange counties. A collaboration of this scope is extremely rare, and the city is grateful for the support of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission for the opportunity to better serve our large community with improved mental health support for veterans and their family members.

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District provided services such as safety patrols by off-duty HPD officers, graffiti abatement, trash pick-up, maintenance of esplanades, among other services outlined in the Districts’ Assessment Plan, that are supplemental to services provided by the City of Houston, had been reduced in Mid-November and ceased completely as of December 11. The District had to cease the services due to unpaid assessments from some of the commercial property owners within the District. Delinquent assessments for 2016 and prior years are being collected for services that were delivered in 2017. The current lawsuit status does not affect the collection of delinquent assessments due for 2016 and prior years for services rendered for calendar year 2017. Please direct questions regarding the cessation of services to Executive Director, Ben Brewer at We are committed to helping our neighborhood remain the safe, vibrant and attractive place to live and do business and would like to hear from you on how we can continue to work together in this effort.