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JONESBORO, Ark. – Thanks to over $1 million in grant money, veterans are soon to be cared for more than ever in Jonesboro.
The Veterans Village project will be used to build nine transitional homes for qualifying area veterans. The grant requires that the project be completed within 18 months.
The City of Jonesboro and Mayor Harold Perrin announced the grant Monday. It was awarded from the Arkansas Development Finance Authority to create a village for veterans.
A press release said it was made possible by Perrin and Jonesboro’s goal of providing basic necessities for those who have sacrificed for America.
“This has been a dream of mine for a long time,” Perrin said. “It’s an important part of our goal of eliminating homelessness, but it’s personal to me because I served in the military and was the son of a soldier. We should never let them down.”
The grant, totaling $1,058,925, covers the cost of construction for the nine homes. City leaders selected a 1.2-acre site for its Veterans Village, which will be operated by the Beck PRIDE Center for America’s Wounded Veterans.
Several attended the announcement at city hall Monday, including Arkansas Adjutant General Maj. Gen. Mark Berry, ADFA President Cheryl Schluterman, Arkansas State University Chancellor Kelly Damphousse, College of Nursing Dean Susan Hanrahan, and Beck PRIDE Center Director Lynda Nash.
City Grants and Community Development Director Tiffny Calloway called the grant award “something that all Jonesboro can be proud of.
“It was an honor to have so many veterans’ service providers from throughout the community in support of this project,” Calloway said.
Schluterman said Jonesboro was selected because of Jonesboro’s thorough commitment to veterans.
“ADFA is pleased to award the first National Housing Trust Fund grant to the Veterans Village,” Schluterman said. “We are very excited about this project, as it will benefit veterans, the city of Jonesboro and the state of Arkansas.”
Perrin lauded the announcement more proof of the effectiveness of public-private partnerships in Jonesboro.
“Congressman Rick Crawford and several of our local state elected officials wrote letters of support, and I know that played no small part,” Perrin said. “So many people are contributing, I can only say what I’ve always said: Jonesboro is a blessed city.”