Manataka® American Indian Council
Northeast Veteran Training and Rehabilitation Center
Focusing On Amputees, Traumatic Brain Injury, PTSD, and Burn Patients Veteran Homestead
It is with great pride that the Veteran Homestead Inc. announces the opening of the Northeast Veteran Training and Rehabilitation Center in Gardner Massachusetts. This new facility offers no cost housing, therapy (physical, occupational and emotional) and education to veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan who have received traumatic injuries.
These services are not limited to the veteran alone but also to his or her family. This is the only facility of its kind that simultaneously addresses the health, economic and education issues that are responsible for the breakup of so many military families. With the divorce rate among returning veterans at 84% this facility will provide the services necessary to keep families together and provide hope for the futures of these returning heroes and their families.
In an effort to ensure that the Native American population is aware of these services we would like to invite any veteran or their representative to tour the facility so we can explain the range of services we provide. More information can be found on our web site www.veteranhomestead.org or by calling our main office at (978) 353-0234. As someone with Native American heritage and a member of the Yakima Warrior Society, our director, Leslie Lightfoot, feels a unique bond with the needs of all Native Americans.
Hope for the future is what the Northeast Veteran Training Rehabilitation Center (NVTRC) is all about. The loss of a limb, a disfiguring burn, a traumatic brain injury, or an emotional scar due to post-traumatic stress are all life changing events that affect both the Veteran and his or her family. The idea of not being a whole person or having your loved ones perceive you as someone seemingly much different than whom you were can leave emotional and psychological scars that dwarf the physical. Our focus will be on education, physical, occupational, and emotional therapy with an emphasis on family counseling along with the life and recreational skills that are so often taken for granted. The NVTRC will address all of rehabilitation and community reintegration, restoring the whole person to a life in which he or she can live and interact with friends and family in a healthier and more functional manner. Some of the highlights of the
NVTRC program are:
Tuition & fees at Mount Wachusett Community College (MWCC) are completely waived for the Veteran and family members
Physical, occupational, and massage therapy
Daycare, fitness center, and other MWCC facilities available to the Veteran and their family at no cost
Focus on individual capabilities to maximize potential and aid in successful community reintegration
Recreational skill development through various sports, activities, and projects
Refinement of all daily living skills in order to achieve
Strengthen family bonds through individual & family therapy
The NVTRC will be situated on ten
to twelve acres of land donated by Mount Wachusett Community College in Gardner,
Massachusetts. There will be a golf simulator, an indoor swimming pool, jogging
track, weight/exercise room, gymnasium, trout pond, and a variety of other
amenities designed to prepare the residents for a life in which his or her
disability will be less of a burden. These services would be both difficult and
expensive to provide if not for our partnership with the College. All of these
facilities are in place at MWCC and their departments of physical therapy and
human services will be invaluable in providing the therapists necessary for the
project. Heywood Hospital, located directly across the street from the proposed
facility, departments of physical, occupational, and speech therapy in addition
to the hospital's wide range of general health services will also be available
to the program. The Center will have a main building with a mock-up apartment
for therapy, several therapy pools, and a small business office. The clients
will be housed in separate condo units located on the NVTRC grounds. These condo
units will be approximately 1000 sq ft with two bedrooms, bathroom, kitchen, and
living room. This living arrangement will allow the clients to practice their
daily living skills and provide privacy for both the Veteran and his or her
The Veteran is a unique type of client. These men and women have been trained to overcome adversity, to trust their leaders as well as the men and women who fight beside them. Their warrior mentality, confidence, and dedication will be powerful weapons against the depression, anxiety, and emotional turmoil that will be their constant enemy. The success that will follow will be a victory for all, as each Veteran takes pride in their accomplishments.
When you review Veteran Homestead's experience and history of success in serving the Veteran community, the excellent educational opportunities available at Mount Wachusett Community College, and the quality health care accessible through Heywood Hospital, what you shall see is an outstanding facility serving our nation’s heroes that cannot be matched anywhere else in the country. We also strongly believe that this program can and should be duplicated in other states. Especially coming from a state that has lead the way in Veteran care, this is certainly a possibility that we are more than willing to promote. Through compassion, care, and achievement, we are putting the words “support our troops” into action and you can too!
We are currently in the development stage of this project and will need approximately seven million dollars ($7,000,000.00) to complete it. The City of Gardner Department of Community Development and Planning has approved our site plan and the architects and engineers are heavy into building design and state and local permitting.
|Contacts for Project Progress|
|Leslie Lightfoot, CEO of Veteran Homestead Inc.||978 353-0234|
|Ray Fanelli, Director of Development Ray@veteranhomestead.org||978 353-0234|
|Ron MacLachlan, Project Director of Operations||603 731-5841|
|Charles Roberts, Architect||413 259-1603|
|Scott Peoples, Engineer||978 464-7701|
|Ed Terceiro, VP Mount Wachusett Community College||978 630-9103|
|David Holmes, State Building Inspector||413 736-3628|
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