When Terry Weeks picked him up from the Dorn Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Columbia, S.C., Barry was homeless. Released from the mental health unit, he had only the clothes on his back and a big bag of medications.
After six months in Greenwood, S.C., at Kinard Manor, transitional housing for men who are veterans, Barry (last name withheld) found work as a painter, acquired a donated vehicle and secured an apartment. He continues to work and do well, said Weeks, a Navy veteran who retired as program director of Kinard Manor and now volunteers.
Since its beginnings in late 2007, Kinard Manor has served 135 veterans, with 69 making successful transitions out of homelessness. Run by Lutheran Services Carolinas using a house provided by Immanuel Lutheran Church, Kinard Manor was the top-rated transitional home for veterans in South Carolina, Georgia and Alabama for 2011, said George Knox, who supervises veterans’ services for LSC. Two other transitional homes, Faith Farm in Dallas, N.C., and Angels House in Columbia serve homeless female veterans.
Participants get a place to stay, meals, clothing and transportation to and from job interviews, school and medical appointments. In 2012 the home logged 44,000 miles getting participants where they needed to be. The VA pays about half the home’s operating costs, with LSC covering the rest.
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