California resort will now be used to house homeless veterans | New

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SANTA CRUZ COUNTY, Calif. (KSBW) – Away from Veterans Day parades and celebrations Thursday, renewed hope and housing for veterans living homeless on the Central Coast.

Administrators of the Santa Cruz County Veterans Memorial Building have closed the escrow on Jaye’s Timberlane Resort. The resort is located off Highway 9 in Ben Lomond.

“I was ready to commit suicide. I was ready to check,” Air Force veteran Darren Barthl said, biting back tears.

Barthl regained hope after suffering personal disappointment and physical injuries.

He used to live in the Benchlands but is now one of the handful of vets staying at Jaye’s Timberland Resort.

“My mate David and I kind of succeeded. We were the two who pushed him to say we could do it,” Barthl said.

What they did was lobby for the very first veterans village. The village is a permanent affordable housing solution for veterans and their families.

“Getting the vets isn’t even the problem. There are 58 vets with Section 8 housing vouchers in this county who don’t even use them. Why wouldn’t we take this opportunity to house our vets even within the community? Said Marine Corp veteran David Pedley.

Partners like Housing Matters have already screened individuals to ensure they are eligible for federal housing vouchers, ”said Susan True, CEO of Community Foundation Santa Cruz County.

The property has 10 cabins, a four-bedroom, three-bathroom home, and an office that will provide veterans services.

It can immediately accommodate up to 18 veterans with the option to expand.

“So obviously there are a lot of hurdles to get to the opening point. Ideally we would like to open with this 18, and continue to develop the property to house a few more veterans on top of that,” said Chris Cottingham. , Executive Director of the Santa Cruz County Veterans’ Memorial Building.

The Community Foundation is one of the many organizations involved in the Veterans Village.

He hopes to raise more money through a $ 75,000 donor matchmaking program through November.

And as for Barthl, he’s fitting in well in his new community, after all it’s home now.

“Feel accepted and Housing Matters really made a difference. They made it so that I had a plan to stay and I can grow up and I’m back,” Barthl said.

It doesn’t stop there. They are already working to fill a need in Watsonville.

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