New shelter in Columbia welcomes homeless veterans

4 months 3 weeks 5 days ago Thursday, July 20 2017 Jul 20, 2017 Thursday, July 20, 2017 1:43:00 PM CDT July 20, 2017 in News
By: Stephanie Lorenc, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Welcome Home had the grand opening of its new facility Thursday morning. It offers 32 rooms with 34 beds that include female and family housing for the first time. It took three years and a total of $3.2 million raised through donations to build.

"We are so excited that Welcome Home, the housing authority, and Truman VA sat together and talked about what we really needed for this community and this was it, and that was in 2014, and to think that our community has come together and to have this here at this day is just the most exciting thing,"  Sarah Froese from Truman VA said.

The new facility provides emergency and transitional shelter to veterans who are homeless or at the risk of becoming homeless.

"The VA tells us we have 700 homeless veterans in the state of Missouri and we’ve been told were the only veterans-exclusive shelter and transitional service center in the state, so it’s a very exciting day for us,” said the director of Welcome Home ,Timothy Rich. 

Aside from the 32 rooms, Welcome Home's new facility includes a full commercial kitchen, dinning space, laundry room, ADA compliant rooms, a computer lab which will house the Vets Work Employment Program.  

“Last year, we had an 80 percent success rate moving our veterans off the streets and into permanent housing within 90 days, which is phenomenal,” Rich said. "And that's our goal, to get you back on your feet into independent housing and be a productive citizen once again.”

Rich said it's "unbelievable" so many local businesses donated services and cash.

"We're just so grateful of those who contributed time, money, energy, and all kinds of influence to make this a reality today,” he said.

Although Welcome Home originally planned for veterans to move into the shelter Thursday, that date has been pushed back to September 1, 2018 because some furnishings are on back order. Even with that small hindrance, Froese said, the shelter is still meeting a immediate need here in Columbia. 

"Any given day we may have to take a veteran and place them in other places out in communities not in Columbia because the contracts we have are full, and Welcome Home has had to send veterans away, so being able not to do that and have them right here in Columbia is incredible," Froese said.  

Others at the ribbon cutting said the same thing.

"The community really rallied around homeless veterans. We're really excited about it," said Phil Steinhaus CEO of Columbia Housing Authority.

The director of Veterans United Foundation, Greg Steinhoff, said, "This project means so much to so many people just because it required literally the community, the businesses, and everybody to kind of come together."

Lt. Gen. Rich Harding said, “This is what the power of a community can do. Today we salute our own community.”

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - The Missouri State Highway Patrol has confirmed it has fired Trooper Anthony Piercy. KOMU 8 spoke to... More >>
2 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 8:42:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - St. Louis officers arrested a suspect that was on the run in a duplex on Sears Court in... More >>
3 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 8:29:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The application for the top education position in the state, Missouri State Education Board Commissioner, opened Friday leaving... More >>
3 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 8:02:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
BLUE SPRINGS (AP) — A commercial real estate records company based in suburban Kansas City has abruptly shut down, leaving... More >>
3 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 7:42:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Fire Department say a house fire that killed a cat Friday afternoon started in the kitchen.... More >>
4 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 7:29:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - For the past six years Ryan Shultz, the creator/owner of the Candy Cane Crib, has shared a well-lit... More >>
4 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 7:17:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said around half of adults in the U.S. struggle with understanding... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 6:00:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in Continuous News
OLATHE, Kan. (AP) — A Blue Springs, Missouri, man has pleaded guilty to kidnapping and raping a sheriff's deputy... More >>
6 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 4:51:08 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Ten people are facing federal indictment in a $5.4 million methamphetamine distribution conspiracy. ... More >>
7 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 4:07:15 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Several new businesses will open in Columbia at the start of the new year. Wheely's Cafe, a... More >>
7 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 3:49:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in Continuous News
INDEPENDENCE - Police have now cancelled an endangered silver advisory for a 73-year-old woman with dementia who might have been... More >>
7 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 3:43:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – The Jefferson City Public School Boundaries Committee began discussions on boundary lines for the city’s new high... More >>
8 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 3:29:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
HOLTS SUMMIT - Holts Summit's board of aldermen met Thursday night to discuss creating a city-owned shelter. Currently, the... More >>
8 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 3:07:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
SEDALIA (AP) — The former administrator of an ambulance service in central Missouri has pleaded guilty to embezzling more... More >>
8 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 2:52:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Police said a 42-year-old woman went missing Friday morning and was considered at risk because of medical conditions.... More >>
9 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 2:11:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Some HIV-positive patients in nearly half the counties in Missouri will lose health insurance coverage next... More >>
10 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 1:02:12 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A 37-year-old man is charged in the shooting of two suburban St. Louis police officers who... More >>
11 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 12:28:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
MONTGOMERY CITY - The Montgomery County Coroner's office is investigating how a person died after a house fire Thursday afternoon... More >>
11 hours ago Friday, December 15 2017 Dec 15, 2017 Friday, December 15, 2017 12:15:00 PM CST December 15, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 35°
12am 35°
1am 35°
2am 35°
3am 35°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

10:35p
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
11:37p
Late Night with Seth Meyers
12:37a
Last Call with Carson Daly
11:00p
Rules of Engagement
11:30p
The King of Queens
12:00a
King of the Hill

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Blindspot
8:00p
Dateline NBC
7:00p
The 86th Annual Hollywood Christmas Parade
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld