HELPING“ Warriors Helping Warriors”
Warriors Helping Warriors received a generous donation from the Head of Christiana Presbyterian Church.
By: Ed Crispin
The grateful thanks of “Warriors Helping Warriors” goes out to the Head of Christiana Presbyterian Church for, at the Session’s February 8, 2021, meeting, awarding $10,000 to be added to the Longwood Foundation’s award, the two awards will provide the needed funds by “Warriors Helping Warriors” to construct within their homeless shelter an“ Americans w/Disabilities Act” compliant bedroom and bathroom. Having these two facilities will provide what is needed for “The Brian Conley Veterans Resiliency Center” to become certified as a “Veterans Administration Supported Shelter.” Obtaining this certification will provide that the Center will receive Veterans Administrative funding that will assist in offsetting the approximately $20,000 per month cost that the Conley’s (the family that established and now manages and obtains funds to operate the Center which includes providing room and board for those using the center) have had to raise for approximately three years, primarily through grants, in order to keep the center open and functioning.
To provide a condensed overview of the Veterans Center and what this means, the idea for the Center began when Kevin, a 44-year-old Army Major, returned from active duty in Afghanistan to medical issues incurred while he was on active duty. Responding to these issues resulted in nine operations and a medical discharge from the Army. Because of Kevin’s experiences, particularly that of navigating the governmental systems upon his return from active duty, Kevin, with the assistance of his parents, Bill and Marsha, purchased a house located on Broad Street in Middletown, Delaware. From there over two years of work went into an almost total reconstruction of the house and its preparation to house and feed twelve (a maximum of fifteen) homeless military veterans. During this period Marsha became an expert at preparing and executing grant requests, while Bill and Kevin became expert at identifying and working with contractors, and other individuals who were willing to assist them in any way possible with their dream.
On April 27, 2019, the Center opened! Since then, a steady flow through of homeless military veterans, almost all of whom, using the Center’s system of counseling on veterans’ benefits, legal assistance, assistance with finding a job, help in managing money, and assistance in identifying permanent housing, have departed the center with a job and appropriate permanent housing plus a ready at anytime social network back at the Center that will gladly assist with any and all problems. Has the money of the Church gone to a good cause? You bet it has. And although there are many good causes, it would be extremely difficult to find one that surpasses “Warriors Helping Warrior!”
P.S. The work of “Warriors Helping Warriors” is never ending. The Conley’s are to be commended for what they do and continue to do and how they gladly put so much of themselves into their endeavor. They need all the support they can obtain and there are many ways to give them support. Telephone (302) 696-2320. Their “Warriors Helping Warriors” website is www.whwonline.org. Should you, when the Covid restrictions are relaxed, like to tour the Veterans Center, you are invited to do so. Please telephone the Center at the above telephone number to arrange a visit.