Collaboration between service provider for women veterans and homebuilders to improve housing for up to 10 veterans and their children in Fairfax
Fairfax, Va. – September 15, 2015 – Formerly homeless and vulnerable female veterans and their children will soon have a newly renovated and upgraded residence, following the kick-off of a collaboration between Final Salute and HomeAid Northern Virginia to renovate Final Salute’s residence in Fairfax County. Final Salute provides safe and suitable housing to homeless women veterans and their children; HomeAid Northern Virginia builds and renovates homeless shelters and housing facilities via the donated expertise, labor and resources of local homebuilders. The renovated home will provide housing for up to 10 female veterans who are struggling with homelessness or military transition and their minor children.
“There are an estimated 55,000 homeless women vets in America – the fastest growing population of the homeless. Yet all too often, supportive housing programs for veterans aren’t tailored to the needs of women veterans, and in particular, single-mother veterans raising children,” said Jaspen (Jas) Boothe, founder of Final Salute. “More than 60% of programs that take in veterans don’t take in women, or don’t take in women with children, or have age limits on the children or have limits on how many kids you can take. That is not the case with Final Salute. Women have served in every major conflict since the Revolutionary War; it’s time they received the resources and support they have earned through their service and sacrifice.”
Jas, an Army veteran who deployed during the Operation Iraq Freedom/Operation Enduring Freedom campaigns, faced homelessness herself when she lost her home to Hurricane Katrina and was simultaneously diagnosed with an aggressive cancer. She learned by direct experience that there were few veteran programs to provide assistance to both her and her son. Since founding Final Salute in 2010 to provide support to other women veterans like her, Jas and Final Salute have served more than 2,000 women across 30 U.S. states and territories.
The Final Salute home in Fairfax County provides 8,700 sq. ft. of living space for up to 10 residents – all female veterans and their children. The house currently has 7 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms. With the renovation led by HomeAid and its “builder captain” Winchester Homes, overall living space will be reconfigured for 8 bedrooms and 8 bathrooms, with kitchen and bathroom upgrades, new fixtures, expanded storage and the overall space layout optimized for residence. A previously under-utilized area of the basement will be converted into living space – with a bedroom, bathroom and kitchen – for a live-in resident manager to provide ongoing services to house residents.
Of the estimated $330,000 cost of the renovation, more than half will be donated by HANV, Winchester Homes and its trade partners – electricians, plumbers, etc. – participating on the project. Final Salute is receiving support from a generous donation provided by the Flatley Foundation, as well as assistance from local architect Ricardo Hendi and his team/partners from Arimse Architects in Alexandria, Va. Bank of America Charitable Foundation provided a $10,000 grant towards this project and Van Metre Companies Foundation is providing 100% of the proceeds from its upcoming annual Cornhole Challenge (Oct. 8 in Brambleton Town Center) to this renovation. HANV is seeking additional grants to cover the remaining costs, so that Final Salute is positioned to invest its budget in programs and services for women veterans and their children, rather than in construction costs.
“It’s inspiring to be involved with Final Salute and HomeAid on a project to give a safe sanctuary to women veterans and their families right here in our region,” said John Monacci, executive vice president of Winchester Homes, a Tri Pointe Group company, which is leading the renovation as a HomeAid builder captain. “Partnering on this project is a great way for us – and the trade partners who are collaborating with us – to serve those who have served our country.”
About HomeAid Northern Virginia
HomeAid Northern Virginia, a chapter of HomeAid America, engages the resources and interests of the homebuilding community and its corporate partners in order to undertake new construction and major renovations to properties owned by service providers that help homeless people gain stability and get back on the road to self-sufficiency. The organization was started in 2001 by members of the Northern Virginia Building Industry Association (NVBIA), and since then, has completed 107 projects valued at a total of more than $13.6 million and serving more than 95,000 homeless individuals.
About Final Salute
The mission of Final Salute Inc. is to provide homeless women Veterans with a place to call home. Final Salute Inc. is the only non-profit organization in the DC Metro Area that offers housing assistance exclusively to homeless women Veterans and their children. Since it’s founding in 2010, the organization has provided more than 10,000 days of housing serving women veterans and their children. Among many national recognitions for this important work, founder Jas Boothe has received a Standing “O”vation from Oprah Winfrey and Toyota and been recognized as a CNN Hero and People magazine Hero Among Us. Learn more and support Final Salute by visiting www.finalsaluteinc.org.
Construction trade partners that will be contributing labor and resources to the
Final Salute project include:
Hizer Home Improvement
Final Salute: HomeAid Northern Virginia:
Rusty Foster Shelley Ducker