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Friendship Place Joins First Lady to End Veteran Homelessness


First Lady Michelle Obama with former Friendship Place participant Leon Drake

This afternoon, a Friendship Place program graduate, U.S. Army Veteran Leon Drake, will introduce First Lady Michelle Obama for her keynote address at the 2014 National Conference on Ending Homelessness. Ms. Obama will speak on her initiative to end homelessness among veterans, highlighting the work done around the country on this effort, including the work of Friendship Place and the National Alliance to End Homelessness.

Mr. Drake was selected for the honor of introducing Ms. Obama in recognition of his 21 years of service in the U.S. Army and his successful journey of overcoming homelessness with the help of Friendship Place’s Veterans First program. Click here to read Mr. Drake’s introductory remarks.

Prior to the keynote speech, Ms. Obama will meet Mr. Drake and three other graduates of our Veterans First program — veterans James Lewis, Shelley Gilbert, and James Davis — together with Friendship Place Executive Director Jean-Michel Giraud.

Friendship Place’s Veterans First program has received national accolades for its success in preventing and ending homelessness for Veteran families. We are honored to partner in Ms. Obama’s important initiative.

Your Donation Helps End Homelessness!

Your support for Friendship Place has a lasting impact. In 2023, our programs ended or prevented homelessness for 4,993 people, including 1,507 children in families and 670 veterans. We empowered 167 people experiencing or at risk of homelessness to get jobs through innovative, state-of-the-art job placement services. Make a donation today in support of our work to end homelessness. Questions? Please feel free to call our fundraising office, 202.957.7834.

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