Veterans’ Tiny House Village Is Finally Giving Heroes The Care They Deserve

by Laura Caseley
Laura is a writer, illustrator, and artist living in New York City.

If you know a veteran, you know they’ve gone through things most non-veterans can’t even imagine, all for the service and protection of their country and its people.

But while many are lucky enough to come home to supportive friends and family to help them readjust to civilian life, many others aren’t so lucky.

Tragically, many of these men and women, even after serving and sometimes suffering, end up with nowhere at all to call home.

The National Coalition for Homeless Veterans (NCHV) estimates that on any given night, there are nearly 40,000 homeless veterans on the street, and about 12,700 of those are the young veterans of recent conflicts.

In all, veterans make up 8.8 percent of the homeless population in the U.S.

Veteran homelessness usually stems from a lack of adequate health care, lingering effects of PTSD, and substance abuse, all of which come from a lack of community support. It’s a tragedy, but there is hope.

The Veterans Community Project (VCP), based in Kansas City, MO, is transforming an empty lot into a new neighborhood for at least 50 homeless veterans in the area. The VCP’s three founders are veterans themselves, so they know the trials that returning soldiers face.

To keep things affordable and help as many people as possible, the VCP is building tiny homes on the lot. Tiny homes have become stylish in the past few years, but they’re also a great, practical way to solve housing issues for homeless and low-income people.

Check out what the VCP is doing for homeless veterans in Missouri, and you might just get inspired to chip in to help those in your area!

[H/T: NX2]

The Veterans Community Project was started by Chris Stout, Kevin Jamison, and Mark Solomon in Kansas City, MO.

All veterans themselves, the problems of homeless and underserved veterans in the U.S. hit close to home.

So they decided to do something about it. And it all started with a tiny house.

Stout, Jamison, and Solomon showed the house off at various events and drummed up support for their idea: a “village” of 50 tiny homes on an empty lot that would house local homeless veterans.

“The goal is to take a veteran off the streets and hand them the keys to their own mini home, with their own food, showers, electricity, and bed.”

And soon, plenty of people, many of them also veterans, were rallying behind them.

In addition to housing, the VCP also offers counseling and mentorship services so vets can recover from trauma with community support and sharpen their skills for employment.

Eventually, the land was secured. This empty lot might not look like much, but for 50 veterans, it was going to become home.

The Veterans’ Village, as it’s known, is a place where homeless vets can not only lay their heads in safety, but also receive counseling services.

After being isolated in homelessness and dealing with whatever trauma-related issues they may have, the VCP says that simply thrusting these vets into everyday social situations can be overwhelming.

Going from extreme isolation to extreme socialization can be very overwhelming and cause unwanted outcomes,” the VCP explains.

“We believe that handing the veteran the keys to their own home and letting them socialize at their own pace is one key to a successful outcome.”

The village will also allow them to connect with other veterans, who can relate to and understand their experiences.

The houses may be small, but their impact on a veteran in need could be immeasurable.

Inside, the houses aren’t large, but they have all the comforts, and the dignity, of a home — including a bed, a table, a fridge, and a bathroom.

This interior belongs to the sample house that the VCP used to gain support for the project.

In addition to their team of dedicated volunteers, who are veterans and non-veterans alike, the VCP has also partnered with other organizations in Kansas City.

By working together, these organizations can provide complete care for veterans in need.

Oh, and the houses are hiding another little secret. The 2×4 support beams are all inscribed with loving, encouraging messages from the community.

Although they won’t be seen, they might just fill these houses with some positive energy!

The Veterans’ Village is still under construction, but with the help of volunteers and the community, the VCP is hoping to start helping homeless veterans soon.

Be sure to watch the video below to get a tour of one of the tiny houses.

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