Community and Home Depot Foundation Rebuild Old House for Veterans
Shabby McDonough building to become place ‘where veterans can feel safe’
August 15, 2017
McDONOUGH— A formerly vacant 115-year-old building will soon be transformed into a safe resource hub for local veterans.
Veterans Support Group, a McDonough nonprofit that provides free assistance to military veterans, took on the 32 Jonesboro St. building through a $10-per-year lease agreement with the McDonough City Council approved in October 2015. Before the agreement, city officials were considering tearing down the building to make way for a parking lot for downtown patrons.
“This is a dream come true,” said Veterans Support Group CEO Bob Van Dunk during Tuesday’s groundbreaking ceremony. “If you look at what we’ve been doing for the last six years, we’ve been meeting people in pizza parlors and everything else, and the city has been gracious to give us this house for the veterans of Henry County.”
Through generous donations from local businesses — including Mercer University, which donated furniture and computers, and the Home Depot Foundation, which donated approximately $93,000 toward the project — the building will not be torn down and will be used for a much more meaningful purpose.
“If it wasn’t for Home Depot, this place would probably be 17 parking spots,” said Van Dunk during Tuesday’s groundbreaking ceremony. “It’s amazing how people come together to get this house up and running. It’s fantastic.”