A local organization, Families in Crisis, received extra funding to help local veterans impacted by the pandemic. The money couldn’t come at a better time with so many vets struggling to get by.
Sharon Yelder served in the United States Army for four years. She was an engineer, serving for the U.S. in Europe and for the Army Material Command before being promoted.
"I was fortunate to come into the government service, where i was able to advance to the grade GS-13, which is a high level of the government," she said.
But her life drastically changed.
"I found myself in a bad situation where I was, and when I came here, I was considered homeless," said Yelder.
She and her son moved to Waco with nothing.
"I have nothing here- no clothes, just the clothes that I brought. Had no furniture, nothing. No car, nothing," said Yelder.
But Families in Crisis was right there to help.
"I'm here today because of them. I have a peace of mind now. When I first came here, I was sleeping on someone's couch, but they helped me with rental assistance. They even helped me with furniture," she said.
The Families in Crisis veterans program started in 2011, helping about 400 vets annually. This year, the program received more funding to get people through the pandemic.
"We've received an extra $371,000 to provide additional support of services and rental assistance to vets in our community," said Suzanne Armour, Director of Programs.
That's on top of the $694,000 it already receives specifically for veterans, which pays for rent, deposits and late fees among other needs.
"We like to be that component of the community that can step in and provide them that type of assistance when there is no one else that can help them," said Armour.
Armour says it's a way to give back to those who have given so much for us.