Many consider it an honor to join the military and serve the country. But for many veterans coming back after military service, home is not what it seems.
“The only hard thing about it was coming back and seeing the disrespect and what we were considered,” said veteran Patrick Nakla.
Nakla knows the challenges of being a veteran. He served six years in the Marine Corps as an aviator in Vietnam and was later diagnosed with PTSD. Many vets are left homeless and helpless, looking to rebuild their lives, which is why 24-year-old Jamie Holzer started “Hometown Hero’s,” a veteran housing program. Holzer is remodeling vacant homes to house veterans and says those that want the help deserves a second chance.
“I am working with Supportive Services for Veteran Families and they help locate those families in need. We bring them in and make sure this home will be a perfect fit,” said Holzer. He says not only will the homes help provide shelter and resources, they will also motivate veterans to get back on their feet.
“This is going to make a difference just because it is going to bring out awareness,” Holzer said. “There are a lot of symptoms and signs that people are scared to address, but I feel like once you start addressing those symptoms and signs, that’s when you can start making improvements in their lives.”
Holzer wants to house five families a year. But to do that, he needs help from the community. So far, he is remodeling a home in Bismarck and a family is set to move in at the end of August.
On Sunday, Holzer is hosting an event featuring food trucks and first responders to spread awareness of his efforts and generate donations. The event will run from 12 p.m. until 7.p.m. at 818 E Main Ave, Bismarck, ND 58501.
For more information on how to volunteer and donate click here