Helping a Female Vet Rebuild Her Life

For Grace, a Navy veteran and prison chaplain, life was full, until her 21-year marriage ended. Shortly afterwards, she lost her job to cutbacks, her house to foreclosure, her car to a repossessor and custody of her children to her husband.

“It was rapid, sudden and painful.” Yet Grace’s strong belief that when one door closes another door opens kept her knocking on all of them. She relocated to New York from Florida, seeking job prospects and distant relatives. But developing health problems derailed her search and prompted her to seek care at the VA Hospital.

When Grace was feeling most dejected, a VA social worker told her about Patriot House, VOA-GNY’s housing program for veterans in the care of the VA. Once at Patriot House, the staff helped Grace along the path to independence. They helped her file for public assistance, obtain a housing voucher and process her medical claims.

“Patriot House is a remarkable place. I had space to restore myself and plan my future, a place of quietness.”

She is most eager to secure a veterans disability pension, so that she can help her son with his college tuition and her daughter with everyday expenses. As Grace spends her days charting her path, she is pursuing a certificate in bookkeeping at night. And she keeps knocking on those doors.

“The Patriot House gave me the perfect opportunity to rebuild my life. It’s helping me to bounce back and be an independent person again.”