Jenny EriksonThe United States has been at war in the Middle East since 2001. Shortly after Islamic terrorists killed 3,000 innocent people in 2001, our soldiers went to Afghanistan in Operation Enduring Freedom. Over a year later, the United States was at war against terror in Iraq as well.
Over 5,000 Americans have been killed in Afghanistan and Iraq, and over 35,000 have been injured, some so severely that they have lost much of their independence due to specialized needs.
One organization that is actively working to meet the needs of our disabled veterans is Homes for Our Troops. The non-profit, non-partisan group was founded in 2004, and is "strongly committed to helping those who have selflessly given to our country and have returned home with serious disabilities and injuries since September 11, 2001."
Homes for Our Troops provides houses, at no cost, to soldiers that were severely disabled in Iraq or Afghanistan. Although eligible veterans may receive up to $63,780 under a Specially Adapted Housing Grant, this barely begins to cover the cost of a specially modified home to meet the needs of the individual.
This week, the week of Veterans Day, Homes for Our Troops announced a campaign to build 100 more homes for severely disabled veterans. Over the past several years, they have built 70 homes, with 30 more in various stages of completion. There are 50 more veterans on the waiting list, and that number continues to grow.
Homes for Our Troops founder, John Gonsalves said, "This campaign is a wonderful, tangible opportunity for Americans to give back the freedom and independence that has been lost due to life-altering injuries suffered by our injured veterans."
On this Veterans Day, I am proud to be an American, and humbled by the men and women who have sacrificed so much to defend the United States from terrorists. I don't have the wherewithal to build an accessible house for handicapped veterans, but I can click the donate button.
Thank you, Veterans. God bless you this Veterans Day.