Home for wounded veterans being created in Flint
(02/14/17) - Two men who know the struggle wounded warriors endure are reaching out to offer help. They're in the process of converting a Flint house into a place veterans can stay and get back on their feet.
"We can assist in certain indescribable issues that only others have faced. There's no name for it. It's like the shadow in the corner. We don't know what to call it, but it's there," said Tobias Lerke, of the Veterans Wounded Warrior Foundation.
The home they are working on is in the College-Cultural area of Flint. There are six bedrooms in the 90-year-old house and they hope to have them fixed up and furnished during the next few weeks.
The two men have been making the house as energy efficient as they can. They have switched the lights over to LEDs and have been making the house as draft-free as they can. Toilets have been made low-flow and Retro Foam insulation will be added to the walls and attic. That will help keep the utility bills down so the home will be more affordable.
They don't plan to charge the veterans until their guests are financially stable. When the first veterans arrive, the two men will provide counseling and help them enroll in the University of Michigan-Flint or Mott Community College.
“We're just trying to get the home operational. We're just trying to get it the most optimal healing place, the best air quality, water quality. The best set-up for natural healing," Lerke said.
"I want this place to be a pillar, like a salvation. A place like a holy Mecca, if you will, so they can come here and feel extremely welcome, they know we're going to help them once they're here," said Markeice Patrick, with the Veterans Wounded Warrior Foundation.
With help from Consumers Energy and the home improvement stores, the two have been able to find some inexpensive items that will lower their energy bills a lot.
Call the Veterans Wounded Warrior Foundation at 248-215-1488 for more information.