Christmas came early for Lisa Stinson and five other formerly homeless veterans living in the Space Coast Habitat for Humanity’s Female Veterans Village in Cocoa.
Stinson and the five other women were surprised Thursday with word that The Home Depot Foundation – the charitable arm of the home improvement store – will pay their December mortgage payments. The gift was a welcome one, Stinson said.
“What this means to me is quite a bit. First of all, I was homeless for four and a half years,” Stinson said.
The announcement came during a special breakfast on Whaley Street in Cocoa to honor the women. A youth football team had built small birdhouses that were presented to the veterans, along with flowers.
The Home Depot gift was part of one of several projects the foundation takes on between Veterans Day and December.
More than 35,000 of the company’s associates are veterans or military spouses. Since 2011, The Home Depot Foundation has invested $400 million in veteran causes, the company said in a statement. Over the past 10 years, officials said, The Home Depot Foundation has helped renovate and enhance more than 50,000 veteran homes and facilities.
Stinson heard about the Habitat for Humanity program after a loss of work. Since then, she and others volunteers have worked on other Habitat for Humanity homes.
“I realized that this wasn’t just a job to be done, this was more,” she said.
“This made me accountable. It made me feel human.”
This article originally appeared on Florida Today: December mortgage paid by Home Depot as gift to Brevard veterans group