CertainTeed donates insulation for Homes For Heroes’ Calgary project
Hopes for future projects in Edmonton and Halifax
By John Bleasby
The Homes for Heroes Foundation assists with the re-integration of military veterans into civilian life through affordable housing and a support structure. Through an initial endowment been made by the McCann Family Foundation and the Canadian Legacy Project, Homes for Heroes’ first development, 908 ATCO Village, will open this summer in the south east Calgary community of Radisson Heights. It will feature 16 tiny homes, a resources center, councilor’s office, family suite, community gardens, public park, and a memorial tribute to soldiers lost in Afghanistan. The non-profit foundation hopes in the future to build similar projects in north Edmonton and in Halifax.
The buildings themselves are being constructed by Calgary-based ATCO in a hanger that was once part of Calgary’s Currie Barracks. Additional funds will be coming from private individuals, businesses and other organizations primarily through donations of time, products and services. Homes for Heroes will partner with businesses and groups to provide exterior maintenance to ensure the village is clean and well kept, with residents expected to participate in the maintenance of the property and tend to the community garden.
Insulation provided by CertainTeed, installed by Total-R Inc.
CertainTeed Canada is proud to be working with Darren Resch and the insulation experts of Total-R Inc. to provide the insulation. Marlon Thompson, Marketing Product Manager for CertainTeed Insulation Canada, said, “The Homes for Heroes project is a significant undertaking, one that CertainTeed is pleased to be able to support. The company believes it is important to give back to our communities and to cooperate with our business partners to help facilitate important initiatives like the Homes For Heroes village.”
CertainTeed R40 and R24 Sustainable Insulation will be installed in the attic and walls of each of the homes. Sustainable Batt Insulation acts as both thermal and acoustical insulation and is ideal for floors, walls and ceilings, and will improve the homes’ energy efficiency, and help lower energy costs.
Total-R Inc. has operations in Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver. Darren Resch, owner of Total-R Inc. said his company is proud to support those who have served our country. “Partnering with CertainTeed made our involvement in the Homes For Heroes project easy. CertainTeed acknowledged both the importance of the cause as well as its decade long relationship with Total-R. The company’s responsiveness and generosity was truly impressive.”
“We’re supporting those individuals who have stood on guard for our country.”
Homes For Heroes co-founder and president David Howard has been helping veterans across the country for the last ten years. He said one of the largest issues facing veterans across the country is homelessness and difficulty transitioning, largely in part to PTSD. “The issue is costing cities a lot of money. An average person experiencing homelessness is costing a city anywhere from $60,000 to $80,000, so if we look at a 20-person village, we’re able to do a substantial savings cost to the city, and at the same time make sure that we’re supporting those individuals who have stood on guard for our country.”
The government of Canada estimates there are around 2,600 homeless veterans in the country. “We think those numbers are more in line with about 5,000 across Canada because you find that there’s a lot of vets that don’t self-identify,” said Howard. “It’s difficult to get a proper handle on it but it is a problem that’s increasing and there’s really not a solution toward it.”
All units will be furnished and supplied with cooking utilities, as well as linens and other requirements for comfortable living and healing. A small rent will be paid by the veterans, an amount typically covered by support services accessed through Veteran Affairs.
Veteran support goes beyond the homes
Homes For Heroes is also working in partnership with various social service agencies and veteran organizations to identify veterans experiencing homelessness and also to provide Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) support for vets. Others will receive rehabilitation based on their individual needs. When a veteran is ready for employment the veteran will work with our local and national employment service partners.
To learn more about Homes For Heroes, please visit www.h4hf.ca
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