Raleigh non-profit offers homeless vets a new chance at life - WSPA.com

Raleigh non-profit offers homeless vets a new chance at life

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the Ladies of Valor gathered donations that included dishes, pots and pans, toasters, coffee makers, linens, towels, toiletries and a start-up bag of groceries. (CASA) the Ladies of Valor gathered donations that included dishes, pots and pans, toasters, coffee makers, linens, towels, toiletries and a start-up bag of groceries. (CASA)
RALEIGH, N.C. -

Formerly homeless veterans have a safe place to lay their heads tonight, and with it came housewarming gifts for the body and soul.

Bill Wiatrak, an Army veteran, is one of 10 veterans who moved into a new complex off Sunnybrook Road Wednesday developed by CASA, a non-profit that develops affordable homes for homeless and low-income individuals.

Wiatrak has struggled over the years with alcoholism and homelessness, but now he has a brand new apartment. Sober for one year, Wiatrak is now looking for a job to start a new chapter in his life.

"I've been through so many treatment centers for my alcohol abuse," Wiatrak said. "Lost my house, my business."

The Sunnybrook Road development is CASA's first to specifically house homeless veterans. The building's 10 one-bedroom units each have a bedroom, bathroom, laundry room and combination kitchen/living room.

Thanks to federal, state and Wake County subsidies, Wiatrak will only have to pay 30 percent of his salary for rent.

In addition to the home, Wiatrak is also provided a bed, and the Ladies of Valor from Wake Forest added some special touches.

"We also collected enough items to furnish their kitchen and bathrooms," said Martha Killian with Ladies of Valor. "We also bought food."

The quilting group also gave each vet a quilt to cozy up to and to remind them that their service was appreciated.

CASA also has propertied in Durham and Chapel Hill. There are also plans to open another complex in Durham.

"We're breaking ground in Durham for another 11 apartments specifically for veterans, and then there will be a phase two for [Sunnybrook Road] site," said Mary Jean Seyda with CASA.

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