Veterans Welcome Home and Resource Center to open new reintegration home

Veterans gave up their freedom to protect ours and now the 'Veterans Welcome Home and Resource Center' in Little River is in the process of creating a reintegration home to help homeless veterans get back on their feet.

Kris Tourtellotte is the director of the organization that helps veterans with everything from paying bills to counseling and he has been trying to create a reintegration home for four and a half years.

"It's been a goal of mine and Bills, and the rest of the staff. This is what we want to do. We realized now what's needed and this is really needed," said Tourtellotte.

They're in the process of securing a house in Little River that will hold up to 8 veterans while they search for jobs.

"What we want to do is take somebody who is capable of working, whether he needs training, or a better resume prep or some job search help. We're gong to have them stay there for free as long as they're doing something," said Tourtellotte.

Robert Boone is a World War II veteran who agrees that the facility is a necessity.

"Some of the veterans when they come back, they've lost their previous job or maybe they didn't have a job before they went into the service. They're looking for a place and right now jobs are tough to get. If they can have a place to stay and get them started, I think is a great project," said Boone.

Veterans will have to qualify to live in the home, and will be able to live there for up to two years, says Tourtellotte.

"They can't come back to nothing, they have to come back to something somewhere so that they're grounded," said Bob Vernon, World War II veteran.

Tourtellotte says they'll stay at the home for free, but once they get a job, they may have to pay 10 percent of their paychecks to the center while they're still living there, but those details are still in the works.

Job service assistance and financial assessors will also be available to veterans staying at the home.