Local non profit turns veteran houses into homes

Dontations of everything from bean bag chairs, to comforters and cookbooks arrived at the Grand Opening of VetStrong. One volunteer said "It's true what they say it's the little things people don't notice that make the biggest impact."

Getting homeless and disables veterans off the streets and into homes is a tall task, but filling those homes is another one organization is hoping to help America’s Finest, taking donations of all kinds big and small.

Their goal is to take empty houses and make them homes, and the leaders of VetStrong showed the simple things, like a coffee cup make all the difference.

A grand opening for Barbara Walz's grand project.

"I started collecting from some of the ladies at my church, around my family and friends just asking people do you need this extra chair can I take it." Walz said.

District 7 Councilwoman Ana Sandoval said the project has the efforts of a whole city with one goal.

"As those veterans find a house that we can help make it into a home." Sandoval said.

Starting when the former VA nurse had an observation about their service.

"We provided homes, but not the stuff to go in it.” Walz said.

Leaving veterans and their families, like Eduardo Cardenas, with nowhere to go.

"We were going through some tough times, she was homeless for over a year, now our living arrangements are comfortable." Cardenas said.

Cardenas said he is one of many.

"There are thousands out there just like me, those with families." Cardenas said.

That VetStrong plans to serve.

"The first person I delivered to I brought him a coffee pot and he had never owned a coffee pot and he just started crying." Walz said.

With a supportive city.

"We met some people who had warehouse space they would donate we met people who had trucks to donate." Walz said.

With some even thinking outside the box, Navy Veteran Heather Sims bringing cookbooks.

"Food brings people together so to always have that home cooked meal especially if you haven't had a home so, really nice to be able to put that little twist in there." Sims said.

VetStrong meets at 1735 Babcock Road every Saturday and if you want to donate your time, your help or any of your things, you can send an e-mail to or go to

If you are a veteran in need of assistance, you can register for aid at

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