San Marcos-based nonprofit Wounded Warrior Homes was recognized for its efforts to help veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury get back on their feet, get jobs and become self-sufficient as they transition from military service to civilian life.
The nonprofit received a proclamation Tuesday from San Diego County Supervisor Jim Desmond, Chairman Nathan Fletcher and the San Diego County Board of Supervisors, declaring Feb. 9 “Wounded Warrior Homes Day” in honor of the nonprofit’s transitional care and counseling program, LIFE – Living Independently For Ever.
The program provides case management and individualized transition plans along with up to two years of transitional housing for veterans with PTSD or TBI.
“When a veteran enters our program one of the first questionnaires we ask them to complete is a list of the areas they need or want help in,” said Mia Roseberry, executive director and co-founder of Wounded Warrior Homes.
They can list anything that is on their minds, like what concerns are keeping them up at night.
“Our program was created from those questions. When we can tackle the tough stuff and find a new direction with a plan, then we can help them make the transition from military service member to confident civilian,” Roseberry said.
Caseworkers help veterans figure out how to advance their education through college education or training in a trade along with providing help in finding a job and giving them resources for financial planning.
Wounded Warrior Homes works closely with Veterans Affairs and other agencies around the country to make sure that the veterans in their transitional housing program are getting the physical and emotional support they need.
The nonprofit serves 13 veterans at three transitional houses in Escondido, Oceanside and Vista, where a tiny home built by students from San Marcos High School and the Warrior Village Project will be placed on its foundation this week. In addition, the organization is currently helping more than 180 area veterans and their families through its extended services.
Since the start of the pandemic, the nonprofit has helped eight veterans get out of homelessness and find jobs.
Most of the funding comes from grants, donations from the community and the nonprofit’s fundraiser, the annual Wounded Warrior Homes Fairways 4 Veterans Golf Outing at Shadowridge Golf Club in Vista.
Roseberry, whose grandfather, father and brother were Marine Corps aviators, started the nonprofit in 2009 with her husband, Steve Roseberry, while they were running a home inspection business.
Roseberry got the idea for the program after she and her husband hosted several dozen Marines from Twentynine Palms at their home for some downtime on the weekends.
The Marines discussed the challenges some of their comrades faced who were trying to transition to civilian life and dealing with traumatic brain injury and other unseen combat wounds. The stories hit a nerve for Roseberry who had mild traumatic brain injury after a car accident as a child. She previously worked as an emergency medical technician and retired after years as a special education teacher.
So the Roseberrys decided to serve the heroes they had over for dinner and provide a safe place with support to help them transition into the civilian workplace.
Since then, the nonprofit has helped 95 veterans through its transitional housing program and more than 1,200 through its expanded support services and phone calls.
They started the LIFE program to further their goal of helping wounded warriors get back on course after facing major setbacks.
“Our lives are complex. We all need more than a roof over our heads. Knowing you have support and assistance with the day-to-day challenges of trying to figure out what comes next in your life, especially after being homeless is a daunting task,” Roseberry said. “The LIFE program incorporates all the areas of support the veterans expressed a need for help and direction with.”
Source: The San Diego Union Tribune