Stand Down is the annual event held at San Diego High School by Veterans Village of San Diego (VVSD) to help veterans in need with issues ranging from a warm shower, to medical care, to legal assistance.
Each year students who are part of the Thomas Jefferson School of Law’s Veterans Legal Assistance Clinic (VLAC) that TJSL operates at VVSD represent veterans in family court at Stand Down. TJSL has operated the veterans clinic since 2006 and has been involved in Stand Down ever since.
“This is the most exciting thing we do,” said Professor Steve Berenson, the director of the VLAC since its inception in 2006. “It is legal experience for the students and they are also part of a huge event that does so much for so many people.”
The students who participated at this event are interning this summer at the law school’s Veterans Legal Assistance Clinic, which provides year-round legal services to homeless veterans at Veterans Village of San Diego. VVSD sponsors Stand Down each year to help homeless veterans get back on their feet with legal services, health care and a variety of other support programs. This year the event began on Friday, July 18 and ran through the weekend.
TJSL volunteer Thomas Jarboe (3L) said “I had one individual that really stood out to me. Unlike some of the others that might be categorized as habitual defaulters of their child support obligations, this dad had recently lost his job and was living out of his car. He was young and embarrassed and not knowing where to go for help. He told me he always had a good job in the military and outside the military until he was let go several months ago. His dispute at work created an inability for him to obtain unemployment insurance or worker's compensation so he was really down on his luck. He genuinely seemed relieved and grateful for all of the help that Stand Down provided,” said Jarboe. He was thankful for the courts, TJSL Vet Clinic, the doctors, dentist, and everyone that had helped him out that day. I truly feel like this individual will quickly get back on his feet and soon be able to support both himself and his daughter. I was proud to be a small part in what made a big difference in his life that day at Stand Down.”
Stand Down is a three-day event for homeless veterans, and according to the Veterans Village website, "it is designed to transform the despair and immobility of homelessness into the momentum necessary to get into recovery, to resolve legal issues, to seek employment, to access health services and benefits, to reconnect with the community and to get off the streets."
Each year proceeds from TJSL's annual Golf Tournament benefits the Thomas Jefferson School of Law Veterans Legal Assistance Clinic.
Registration for this year's golf tournament being held on Friday, October 10, 2014 at Salt Creek Golf Club is now open.
This year the proceeds will benefit the VLAC and current Thomas Jefferson School of Law students with the New Guaranteed Merit Scholarship Program.