A House Becomes A Home: The Story Behind Fayetteville’s Reveille Retreat
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In 2011, ABC’s hit show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, went to Fayetteville, North Carolina to renovate a 7,000 square foot house to create the Jubilee House, a residence to help homeless Veteran women and their children get back on their feet.
The community came out in full force. Hundreds of volunteers joined in the renovation effort. Former first lady Michelle Obama was even there to help dedicate the Jubilee House. After Ty Pennington yelled “MOVE THAT BUS,” an amazing home with an amazing purpose was revealed.
While the program was initially successful, financial struggles plagued the institution after a few years. Eventually, in June 2015, the Jubilee House was forced to close its doors.
However, the story doesn’t end there. Endeavors saw an opportunity to further serve women Veterans in the Cumberland County community. Our regional office was already serving 400 Veterans annually who were facing housing issues, but they wanted to do more.
Endeavors set out to acquire the property and make the necessary renovations.
Renovate and Restore: Creating a New Home
Endeavors already had an idea of what they wanted the Reveille Retreat to look like. They envisioned modeling it after our Fairweather Lodge in San Antonio, Texas, with permanent supportive housing as well as case management and life skills training.
With this plan in mind, we went to work fixing water damage, structural issues, and other problem areas that needed to be addressed to bring the house up to safety standards.
Photo courtesy of Ben Stout Construction
Ramps and wider doorways were installed to make it accessible to individuals with disabilities.
We added more stoves and refrigerators to the kitchen to accommodate more people.
After three years and over $400,000 of renovations, the Reveille Retreat was ready to open its doors.
Reveille Retreat Improves Lives
The goal of the Reveille Retreat is to give women with mental illness who are experiencing homelessness a safe place to regroup and get back on their feet.
Education opportunities such as job training and parenting classes are available. We provide assistance with homework for school-aged children to ensure that their needs are being met as well.
Group sessions and case management offer a community support system that provides stability in the residents’ lives.
Rachel’s Reveille Experience: Real Life Change
Rachel was a victim of domestic abuse. She made the brave decision to leave that destructive relationship and take her four children with her. Her only option at the time? They lived in her small car together. It was not ideal, but it was free from abuse.
After learning about Reveille, her life changed forever.
Rachel interviewed and was accepted to live at the Retreat. When she first arrived at Reveille, she was working a dead-end job that offered her very little hours. The Reveille Retreat staff encouraged her to further her education, and she did, working toward and earning her associate’s degree. While pursuing her degree, the staff helped her children academically, giving Rachel more time to focus on her own school assignments.
Rachel also took advantage of the parenting classes and group sessions the Retreat offered. She embraced every opportunity the Retreat had to offer and drastically improved her life.
As a result of her hard work and the help provided at the Reveille Retreat, Rachel was accepted into Spring Lake Police Department’s Academy. She was able to move out to her own three-bedroom apartment, thanks to the support and services she received at the Reveille Retreat!
Endeavors created the Reveille Retreat to give women with mental illness and their children the ability to change their lives for the better.
Through their amazing programs and incredible, hardworking staff, they have succeeded in empowering women to do just that!
Help Support the Reveille Retreat
For information on how to donate to the Reveille Retreat and other Endeavors’ programs, please visit https://endeavors.org/support-our-mission/ to find out more!
Endeavors is a longstanding national non-profit that provides an array of programs and services in support of children, families, Veterans, and those struggling with mental illness and other disabilities. Endeavors serves vulnerable people in crisis through innovative personalized services. For more information, please visit endeavors.org.