Framing and roofing is almost complete on phase one of a Habitat for Humanity project in Santa Clarita which is good news for the Washington family.
The family of six is one of 78 military families that will soon live in the Veteran Enriched Neighborhood on Centre Point Parkway.
“Phase one, the first 26 homes, will be completed this summer hopefully in June,” said Kimberly Waller, Associate Director of Marketing and Development for Habitat for Humanity. “We have a timeline to complete phase two, which is 31 homes, six months after the completion of phase one. Then the remaining homes six months after that.”
(From Habitat for Humanity)
Hope Washington was excited and eager to dedicate her life in service to our country. She began her military career as a JROTC student during the 9/11 terrorist attacks and started basic training for the U.S. Army in 2004. “My first duty station was at Fort Carson, Colorado which is where I met my first husband,” she shares. “Things were wonderful at first, and then I found out I was pregnant right before I was supposed to deploy. I ended up separating from the Army in 2005 and took on the role of a military spouse.”
Unfortunately Hope’s marriage took a turn for the worse due to her husband’s infidelity and financial abuse, issues that are far too common among military and veteran families. Hope filed for divorce and started to get her life and finances back on track as a single mother. That’s when she met her current husband, Korey, who was also active duty in the U.S. Army.
Shortly after Korey and Hope got married, he deployed to Iraq and their lives were forever changed. As a result of injuries he sustained in combat, Korey was forced to medically separate from the military after four years of service. He now suffers from severe Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Traumatic Brain Injury. He also experiences frequent seizures, tremors, and has problems with his knees and shoulders.
Upon Korey’s medical discharge from the Army, the family’s finances suffered and they ended up with no place to live. With no family or friends to lend their support, the Washingtons were forced to use every dollar they had to pay for and live out of a local hotel room with their family, which at that point had expanded to include four children. Hope tried to file a claim with the Veterans Administration so they could get the financial and medical benefits necessary to support the family and Korey’s condition. Unfortunately, the VA would not award them any benefits because they did not have a permanent address. But without their benefits, they couldn’t afford to rent or buy their own home. “It was like a catch-22,” Hope says. “I just couldn’t believe how much red tape there was with the VA. It was truly heartbreaking and confusing that my husband couldn’t get the benefits he had rightfully earned.”
That’s when Habitat stepped in.
After hearing their story, the staff at Habitat for Humanity SF/SCV took immediate action to secure a temporary mobile home for the Washington family. Now that they have a permanent address, they were able to apply for and receive benefits from the VA. Korey was deemed 90% disabled and unemployable, while Hope was designated as his full-time caregiver at the highest financial tier since Korey cannot function alone. Habitat is currently working with the Washington family so they can qualify to move in to our 78-home Veteran Enriched Neighborhood® that is under construction in Santa Clarita, CA. Hope says that Korey and the kids look forward to baking together on the holidays and hosting get-togethers with friends in the neighborhood.
“Being able to buy our own home will put us on track to making a happy and full life for our children and family,” Hope said. “My oldest son wants to be a chef when he grows up, so he can’t wait to help me prepare family meals in our very own home. We’ve been through so many rough patches and sometimes didn’t know where our next meal would come from, but Korey and I have been taught by the military to persevere through the darkest storms. Habitat for Humanity has truly been the light and the blessing in our darkness.”
To honor the memory of longtime community leader Charlotte Kleeman, a celebration of life will be held Friday, June 3, at the College of the Canyons University Center, located at 26455 Rockwell Canyon Road in Santa Clarita, beginning at 2 p.m.
Visit newly opened MB2 Entertainment at the site of the former Mountasia on June 5 to support Carousel Ranch. Purchase a play card and a percentage of your purchase will benefit Carousel Ranch. Visit and have fun while donating to a worthwhile cause, the clients of Carousel Ranch and the equestrian therapy and vocational training programs.
The Los Angeles County Development Authority is pleased to announce that it has been awarded more than $1 million in grants from the California Public Utilities Commission, through the Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing Program, which provides financial incentives for installing energy efficient systems on multifamily affordable housing throughout the State.
As the nation observes Memorial Day and honors those who paid the ultimate sacrifice in service to our country, travel to gatherings with family and friends will dramatically increase vehicles on roadways during the holiday weekend.
After the shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff Station will be working with all SCV School districts to ensure added safety through the remaining school year.
The William S. Hart Union High School District Governing Board unanimously approved the appointment of Bryan Wilson as the new principal of Golden Oak Adult School. He takes over for Donna Manfredi who announced her retirement in March.
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Tuesday nine new deaths and 3,589 new positive cases in Los Angeles County and 100 new cases in the Santa Clarita Valley. This new data brings Los Angeles County death totals to 32,095, county case totals to 2,945,669 and Santa Clarita Valley case totals to 76,205 since March of 2020.
Science students from The Master’s University gained valuable hands-on experience and bolstered their resumes for graduate school last month when they presented original research at the West Coast Biological Sciences Undergraduate Research conference in San Diego.
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has released a new report, "Mortality in Los Angeles County, 2020: Provisional Report." The report compares the provisional number of deaths and associated death rates and leading causes of death among L.A. County residents in 2020 with what was reported in 2019.
The city of Santa Clarita, in partnership with Frontier Toyota, Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, is proud to sponsor the 2022 White Ribbon Campaign in the Santa Clarita Valley.
As aerospace and defense contracts started dwindling at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Donald Volkmann, owner of VP Manufacturing in Canyon Country, made the difficult decision to close in August 2020 after 33 years in the aerospace manufacturing business.
The California Department of Public Health, working with Sacramento County Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is investigating its first suspected case of monkeypox infection in Sacramento County in a person who recently traveled abroad.
Animation Career Review, an online resource site for those researching careers in animation, game design, graphic design, digital art, and related fields, has recognized California Institute of the Arts in six categories in its 2022 Graphic Design School Rankings, including two top spots for schools in California and the West Coast.
The College of the Canyons men's basketball program invites girls and boys from third to eighth grade to participate in the 2022 Howard Fisher's Cougar Basketball Camp, with two sessions beginning in June.