Catholic Charities Veteran Services helps veterans and their families who are experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness find stable housing and provides ongoing case management that includes financial planning, assistance applying for VA benefits, emergency assistance and more.

Monday, 15 May 2023

Veteran Finds Comradery and Community at MANA House

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A common misconception about those experiencing homelessness is that their decisions somehow led them into this situation. But it’s not that simple. Anyone, no matter how stable, can become homeless due to factors outside their control.

Veterans in particular are disproportionately affected by homelessness. “It's easy to fall between the cracks. Most of us have some type of trauma from military service,” said David, a Navy veteran.

MANA House Helps Veterans Find Stability

Due to the pandemic and rent increases, David found himself unable to afford rent at his apartment and had nowhere to go. Having multiple sclerosis (MS) and being in a wheelchair meant his options were limited. He was scared, overwhelmed, and didn’t know what to expect from a shelter.

When David got connected to MANA (Marines, Army, Navy, Airforce) House, it saved his life. MANA House is a program that serves veterans who are experiencing homelessness and provides transitional housing. Through case management and resources, these veterans have the support they need to find permanent housing and employment, access VA benefits and transportation, and more.

Serving Veterans with Dignity and Compassion

From the first day at MANA House, David noticed how the staff and case managers were willing to walk alongside him as he got back on his feet. MANA House put careful thought into all the resources provided, from assistance finding employment to bus passes for transportation. If he needed a specific item of clothing, it was easily accessible to him.

“I can’t think of any other place that gives the attention and time to helping a person get to that next step. I really don’t know where I'd be. I'm grateful I am here,” David said.

One Veteran Helping Another

He says that the veterans living at MANA House share an empowering sense of comradery. It reminds David that they all have something in common and are working toward the same goal of stability.

“We help each other out as well, in addition to the resources that are here. ‘One veteran helping another’ is kind of one of the slogans here. And we definitely make sure that nobody goes without,” added David.

Starting a New Chapter

With the support of his case manager, staff, and fellow veterans, David has since moved into his own apartment in Chandler, Ariz. He is excited to move on to the next stage of his life and is thankful for the bonds he formed while at MANA House.

If you have a heart for assisting veterans, you can support people like David by donating online or through MANA House’s Amazon Charity List. Your donation helps veterans get one step closer to self-sufficiency.

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Bethany Durham

Bethany Durham has a bachelor’s degree in Communication and a passion for storytelling. Her writing for Catholic Charities has included blogs, newspaper and magazine articles. She enjoys telling client stories in a way that captures the humanity and emotions of those she writes about. When she’s not working, Bethany loves to spend time with her two cats, hike and sing karaoke.


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