Representatives from groups across the county talked on Tuesday about ways to enhance support for Carroll’s veterans.

Topics at this month’s Veterans Advisory Council meeting ranged from homelessness prevention to transportation assistance and employment services — and the various ways groups can work together to help the approximately 13,000 veterans who live in Carroll County.


VAC member Bill Murphy, co-founder of the Friends of Disabled American Veterans in Carroll County, said at the meeting that his organization just received a handicap-accessible van this week to offer transportation services.

“We are going to be picking up veterans from their homes and delivering them to nonemergency dental and medical treatments,” said Murphy. “And our van is a handicapped van. By having a handicapped van we will be able to pick up handicapped veterans as well.”

He said that his organization is looking for more volunteer drivers to support the effort..

Murphy currently has seven drivers and is looking for anyone interested in helping provide free transportation to local veterans, and can be reached by phone at: 443-798-5370, and by email at wwwmurph42@peoplepc.com.

Audrey Cimino, executive director of the Community Foundation of Carroll County, said that she also helps people get medical and dental services and is working with a local dentist who plans to offer low-income dental services twice a month on Saturdays.

Carroll County Veterans Independence Project Vice President Ed Cramer came to the Veteran’s Advisory Council Tuesday afternoon to share progress on the project he hopes will help homeless veterans in the county.

“It’s beautiful accommodations for underserved populations,” she told Murphy. “So you might want to put that in the back of your head, too, because that’s going to be some significant dental work. Not just cleaning and polishing, but some reconstruction work too.”

Cimino presented information on the Community Foundation to the VAC this week as it is coming up on its 25-year anniversary, and she is hoping for collaboration.

“All these things you are talking about, we also do, but we don't always know if it’s a veteran or not,” she said. “That would be helpful for us to know because we do have some funds at the foundation. I can say, ‘I need $1,500 for a funeral.’ That’s how quick we can make it happen. I just can’t do it if I don’t know about it. We are all working hard to get things done in Carroll County.

“Yesterday I got the draft of my 2017 audit, and we are just shy of $7 million in the audit,” said Cimino. “And we gave away $1.6 million — that's not government money. That’s nickels, dimes and dollars from the people in Carroll County. If you’ve got a problem, this is a great place to be because there’s people that are going to help you with it.”

Other efforts to help veterans include services at the Carroll County Business & Employment Resource center.

John Veney, the veterans representative at the BERC, said that he is working with 14 veterans and was able to help three find employment this summer.

“We are kind of waiting for the summer to break,” Veney said at the meeting. “Usually the summer is the slow period for employment. We are looking forward to some good things [in the fall] and we’ve got a few job fairs coming up next month.”

He said information about the events will be posted when it is finalized.

Veterans services information can also be found at websites for the Veterans Services Program of Carroll County, Carroll County Veterans Independence Project, and the Community Foundation of Carroll County as well as the section of the BERC website dedicated to veteran’s services.