After years of having served America, a group of homeless veterans are now starting to receive support and assistance from a community in Phoenix, Arizona. Volunteers just recently finished remodeling the Mana House, which is a location that focuses on helping homeless veterans get back onto their feet and gain their independence again. Volunteers showed up to install new mirrors, shelves, and shower heads in addition to some of the many other remodeling tasks available to improve the Mana House for the residents living there. Tony Motley of the Madison Street Vereran’s Association likened the experience to feelings of excitement and lifting the spirits of everyone involved.
In that regard, the remodeling of the Mana House could go a long way to help the female veterans living there feel more comfortable and work towards rebuilding their lives. The goal is to create an environment where everyone will be able to relax and feel comfortable with each other. Many of these women have been living on the street, forced to fend for themselves and feel as if they didn’t have anyone to trust. Now they will have a space that is unique just for them, allowing them their own space to relax and unwind.
Until this point, the women were keeping their stuff in filing cabinets in the Mana House. Home Depot recently donated dressers so that the women would be able to store their items more suitable. While dressers may seem like something that wouldn’t be major to most women, it’s a little thing that means a lot to women who have been homeless for quite some time. It makes them feel at home and provides them with some perspective so that they can focus on what they can do to start rebuilding their lives.
Many of the veterans who are residents at Mana House are those who are struggling with addiction or mental health issues. There are a lot of them who found that they were not able to transition from being at war to coming home and living on their own. The things that they have seen and experienced while they were at war contrast greatly from what they are used to here in their own country; often times, it is too difficult for them to be able to verbally express to other people who may not be able to relate, so they turn to other options to try to free them of their problems.
The goal for Mana House is to get the facility fully prepared so that it will be ready for the Afghanistan and Iraq veterans that are going to come home soon. Motley says that most vets spend around six months at the Mana House and then when they leave, they have a job, a salary, and enough money in their savings account to feel as if they have a solid foundation for themselves. That is something that he would like to see every homeless veteran accomplish.