Here at Habitat Tucson, our goal is to help better our community, and one way of doing so is to ensure Veterans have a safe place to call home.
Rodger Schuld, the volunteer Chairperson for the Veteran’s Committee, served in the Airforce and knows just how difficult it can be for Veterans to enter back into the civilian lifestyle. This is why he helped create the Veteran’s Committee – to ensure Veterans have a home and feel part of a community.
“What we do is find Veterans who either need help finding a home, or need assistance with home repairs,” says Rodger.
In the last six years, the Veteran’s Committee has proudly helped a Veteran build a Habitat home every year.
Our latest Veteran Homebuyer is Jesse Neal, who served in the Army as well as in the National Guard. Prior to becoming involved with Habitat Tucson, Jesse lived in a one-bedroom apartment where break-ins occurred quite frequently. Jesse was looking for a change in residency, as well as a community he could feel a part of. With Habitat, not only has Jesse gained a sense of self-sufficiency, but he’s found a sense of community.
“Through my sweat equity I’ve already met most of my neighbors,” explains Jesse. “They’re a nice group of people I can actually trust and hang out with!”
“Many Veterans have a lot of aches and pains from all the things they did while serving and can use some help. That’s where Habitat comes in,” says Rodger.
When joining the Veteran’s Committee, members act similarly to any other volunteer associated with Habitat. Some members go out and work on Veteran Builds or they go out and work on normal builds with Habitat.
Veterans Build is a program that joins military service members, their families, and the families of the fallen band together and build affordable housing. This helps create strength and self-reliance among these community members.
Veterans Build also helps those who served with critical home repairs. One story involves Marine Corps Veteran, Rico, who suffered a stroke. His stroke left him unable to work and physically incapable to carry out home repairs himself. This is when Habitat Tucson volunteers stepped in replaced all single pane windows with dual pane ones, and replaced both sliding doors with dual pane sliding doors as well is vital for veterans to age safely in place.
“It’s a great opportunity to help those who have served our country and may need some help,” says Rodger.
To learn more about joining the Veteran Build committee, email our Volunteer Manager, Gina Hansen, at: email@example.com.