In the North Florida city of Pensacola, the ownership of the Heritage Oaks Mobile Home and RV Park is taking major steps to help those who made who made a commitment to country – our nation’s veterans in need, living in motels or on the streets.
According to WEAR TV, beginning in 2010, new owners Ready Alliance Coordinating for Emergencies (BRACE) made upgrades to the community.
“It was out with the crime and unappealing lifestyles and in with new roads, water systems and homes,” said BRACE CEO Greg Strader.
“We replaced primarily 1950’s and 60’s mobile homes that according to the Florida Division of Emergency Management failed at an alarming rate during the 2004-05 hurricane systems.”
Once the community was cleaned up, Strader teamed with the 90Works organization, The Area Housing Commission, The City of Pensacola Housing Division, Escambia County Neighborhood Enterprise Division and POE in Action to develop an action plan to help homeless veterans.
That plan included accepting Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) vouchers, which Strader says many locations will not accept due to certain risks.
A report from the Escarosa Coalition on the Homeless showed that 15 percent of those who identified as homeless in the city identified themselves as a homeless veteran.
On of those veterans was Steven Martin, who had a very difficult two years.
“I was in the woods. I had no place and until the veterans helped me out by finding a place; and after two years I found a place, but it’s like being in prison or jail or whatever you want to call it,” said Martin.
After time spent living in the woods, and then in a motel, Martin is ecstatic that he’s found a home for himself and his two dogs.
“Deeply from my heart, very. My babies got my dog house,” said Martin.
Strader says that eight manufactured homes are available in the community for veterans and their families, and those interested or in need should call (850) 912-2206.
In the West, Modular Housing Provides a Solution
A similar program is under way in Midway City, California, where American Family Housing and GrowthPoint Structures have come to the rescue to help house the area’s homeless veterans with modular housing.
The project, Potter’s Lane, consists of 16 studio-apartment units refurbished from cargo containers, and is said to be the first example in the nation of a multi-unit permanent housing complex fashioned in this way.
“Thinking outside of the box is what we have to do to get these veterans housed,” said Timothy Wilson of the Department of Veterans Affairs in Long Beach, speaking to a crowd of about 300 visitors at the unveiling of the complex in February.
For more on the manufactured housing industry stepping up to help those in need, check out the MHLivingNews feature “An Industry With a Heart – The Tomorrow’s Home Foundation,” linked here. ##
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Submitted by RC Williams to MHLivingNews.
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