In the late 1970s, DC City Councilman H.R. Crawford received a call about evicting a camp of homeless from under a bridge near Georgetown. Upon inspecting the site, Councilman Crawford found himself astonished by the ingenuity of the community in applying its survival skills to provide an electrical supply for lighting and cooking. He was even invited for a fried chicken dinner made on a hot plate and served with coffee.
During that memorable dinner, Councilman Crawford learned that the primary population of the homeless community was composed of veterans, each with a distinct story that shared a dire conclusion. These men and women were still at war, battling every day to survive homelessness. Despite Councilman Crawford’s admiration and compassion, he was unable to avert the agonizing task of evicting the men and women from their camp. The event did, however, provide the catalyst for the founding of Access Housing, Incorporated Southeast Veterans Service Center. H. R. Crawford’s vision was to create a haven for those who have served in our country’s armed forces with access to safe, decent, sanitary, permanent housing. Decades later, SEVSC continue to fulfill that mission.