The first time Adam Davis came to Easterseals Military and Veteran Services, he was looking for help with one of his college classes. He probably didn’t expect that one day, that connection would lead to him getting his own home.
Davis, an Army veteran, was handed the keys to his new home at the 6th Annual Honoring Our Heroes 5K presented by the Kroger Veterans Association Resource Group. The group had been looking to tackle the issue of veteran homelessness and decided to present one veteran with a free tiny home.
“It’s incredible overwhelming,” Davis said standing outside the home built locally by Warrior Homesteads. It came fully furnished with a living room, kitchen, bedroom, bathroom, and storage space.
Chris Macklin, a job development coach with Easterseals Military and Veteran Services, recommended Davis for the honor.
“We figured Adam would be a perfect choice, because he’s doing everything he can to succeed,” Macklin said.
Davis was first referred to Easterseals through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Program, which provides veterans with support as they choose a career pathway.
“I was going to college. I needed help with math,” Davis said. “I was pointed in [Easterseals] direction for a tutor, and I met Chris and everybody there.”
“He found a home at Easterseals,” Macklin said. “He would come just to be in a location where he could be with other veterans going through the program.”
Macklin himself started brushing up on statistics so he could tutor Davis and provide the support he needed. He also developed a trusting relationship with Davis to gain a better understanding of what other barriers he might be facing. He learned that Adam, like many veterans, was struggling to find reliable transportation and affordable housing.
“Adam also has a challenge with the car,” Macklin said. “He’s paying out of pocket to keep the car running so he can get to school and he can have a job. This is one barrier, and we’ve got to move on to the next.”
Adam and Chris worked together to navigate through the challenges. Adam successfully completed his coursework at Cincinnati State, including that statistics class. And Adam didn’t stop there. Inspired by Chris’ pursuit of a Master’s degree in social work, Adam is now pursuing a bachelor’s degree in the field.
“With my internship, Chris played a big role in that. And with my foot in the door, I finally got my first paying job in the field,” Adam said.
“Whether you are on the first step of your journey or you’re almost completing the journey, we’re here for you anywhere along the way,” said Scott Robinson, director of Easterseals Military and Veteran Services.
“If they’re starting school, if they are half-way through school or they’re nearing completion or they want to go into college – we help them do that,” Robinson added. “Or if they want something as simple as to increase their computer skills and they don’t want to go into school, we can help them with that.”
Easterseals Military and Veteran Services is 100% veteran staffed and open to any former military service member in the 16-county Greater Cincinnati region. Services range from emergency stabilization to educational resources and employment services.
“We have over 200 resources that we collaborate with to help veterans and their family members overcome any challenges that they are facing,” Robinson said. “We try to find the best and most viable resources within the community.”
“Together, we can accomplish a lot, and it’s no different than in the military when you have a platoon,” Macklin said of Easterseals approach to provide solutions that work for vets. “Somebody else’s strength is your weakness and vice versa.”
You can help us serve more veterans and military familes right here in Greater Cincinnati by making a gift to Easterseals.
CLICK HERE to visit our online giving page and select VETERAN SERVICES under gift designation.