House for homeless veterans in Waterloo undergoes renovations - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

House for homeless veterans in Waterloo undergoes renovations

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(KWWL) -

Progress is coming along at the house for homeless veterans in Waterloo. In a few weeks, three veterans will have a new home, but it will serve as more than just a place to sleep, helping them to get on their feet.

The house, located at 420 E. Ninth St. in Waterloo will be the first house in Waterloo dedicated to these homeless veterans. Volunteers have been busy working on renovating the house.

Americans for Independent Living received a $100,000 donation from the Trump foundation earlier this year. President-elect Donald Trump made Veterans a big part of his campaign, calling for better care of our nations Veterans. That donation has helped this project get started. 

Everyone wants to help the veterans," said Americans for Independent Living Director Teresa Tjaden. "I mean the reason that we're here in the greatest country, and we have the opinions that we do is because of these veterans, and the fact that they're outside living...we need to change that."

Little by little, changes have begun to take shape at the house. Volunteers have been busy chipping away and rebuilding, inside and out. 

During the renovation process, they've kept the Veterans in mind, making the home wheelchair accessible. They've taken out the deck in order to put in a wheelchair ramp, and inside they're making a fully handicapped bathroom. 

But for these veterans, the home will serve as much more. 

"Our intention is to get them job training, to get them mental counseling if necessary, maybe physical therapy if needed," said Tjaden. "Anything to get them back into being empowered individuals again, is what we need to do."

They hope to build a house for female veterans in the near future.

If you're looking to volunteer, contact Americans for Independent Living Director Teresa Tjaden at teresatjaden@afiliowa.org. You can also make a donation at http://www.americansforindependentliving.org/

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