December 22, 2020

VASH Program Manager Nicole receiving a delivery

This October, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Mu Lambda Omega Chapter, Culver City/West LA (AKA-MLO), began “Operation AKA Assist” to organize and provide Welcome Home Kits for Step Up veterans experiencing homelessness, in partnership with the Veteran Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) team at Step Up.  VASH Program Manager Nicole Jean is a member of AKA-MLO and connected the two organizations in late September to gear up for veteran move-ins this fall! 

The VASH team getting ready to deliver Thanksgiving meals donated by AKA-MLO

Since 1908, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated® has improved the lives of people worldwide by attracting and retaining capable and motivated members who genuinely care about each other and the people they serve.  Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. has 300,000 members, and 1,026 chapters internationally.  Mu Lambda Omega Chapter is led by chapter President Akilah J. B. Wallace, located in the Culver City/West LA area of CA, along with its 131 members and has donated countless hours of volunteer service to a number of charitable and cultural organizations.  As the pandemic progressed, AKA-MLO was looking for ways to continue to help virtually.

AKA-MLO Global Impact Chairman Monique Hunter was thrilled to discover that Step Up VASH team member Nicole Jean was also a Global Citizen within their chapter.  This provided the vital link for getting Operation AKA Assist off the ground.  Monique also had a more personal connection to the cause, “Personally, I was drawn to this program because both of my parents served in the military. I am proud of the work that our veterans do on behalf of our country. In addition, I am honored that we have two veterans currently in our chapter who immediately said yes to participating in this worthy cause.”

Step Up veteran Grayling receiving his Welcome Home kit and furnishings on move in day

The impact of Operation AKA Assist has been felt directly by Step Up veterans like Grayling (pictured here) who received furnishings and welcome home kits thanks to the generous support of AKA-MLO.  Throughout the pandemic, Step Up’s VASH team has continued moving in Veterans just like these individuals into scattered site apartments around Los Angeles.  You can watch a few other Vets opening their kits HERE.   AKA-MLO also worked directly with their community partners to make sure 30 veterans received hot Thanksgiving meals in November. 

AKA-MLO has made a meaningful and long-lasting contribution to Step Up Veterans’ lives through mobilizing its community and its partners. All told, the Step Up VASH team has delivered furnishings donated by the Mu Lambda Omega Chapter to 11 apartments so far, along with over 150 bedroom, bath, and kitchen items for Welcome Home kits.  Nicole says of AKA-MLO, “They are a supportive, encouraging and loving chapter that has welcomed me with open arms and exemplified the meaning of true sisterhood. I became involved with this chapter because they are committed to doing the work of serving the community.” 

You can learn more about AKA-MLO here!

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Provides one hour of work force development training to a Step Up member.

Provides one home visit from a psychiatrist or nurse for medication support.

Provides a Welcome Home Kit to furnish and outfit an apartment for a member.

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