Community Service Day 2014: Brightening the Day for Homeless Veterans

Globe University-Sioux Falls recently held their annual Community Service Day. Each year, all campuses close their doors so that the faculty and staff can get out in the community and make a difference.

This year, Globe University-Sioux Falls worked with the Volunteers of America to do some spring cleaning at the Berakhah House, temporary housing for homeless veterans. It was a gorgeous day for some cleaning both inside and out. This project was a great way to start the spring season following such a long winter.

vet tech program

Veterinary Technology Instructor Autumn Whitely and Resident DVM Dr. Edward Kreider

What was once a Sioux Falls home run by the Presentation Sisters, providing hospice-like assistance for HIV and AIDS patients, is now reaching out to another often forgotten group of people. The Berakhah House formed to address the needs of homeless and struggling veterans in the Sioux Falls community. The Sioux Falls Veterans Affairs Healthcare System, Volunteers of America-Dakotas, and the Catholic Diocese joined together to launch this residential program.

The services provided through the house are contracted through the Sioux Falls Veterans Affairs Healthcare System. Their mission is to rapidly reduce homelessness among veterans. The Veterans Housing Program refers individuals to the Berakhah House to provide safe, monitored, and structured housing for veterans.

Director of Veteran Services Chris Nelson noted, “the residence provides meals, supportive services designed to overcome barriers to independent living.” He went on to add, “It would have taken weeks to accomplish what Globe did in just a few hours. Thank you.”

The eight-bedroom home can house up to seven vets at any time. All referrals come from the VA and the veteran is given up to 60 days to find a job and/or a permanent place to stay. Some stay a week, while others may need a little more time.

The staff and faculty from Globe University-Sioux Falls had a great time, too. Medical Assistant Program Chair Amy Zobel reflected, “Not only did the deep cleaning make a difference in the lives of those who live at the Berakhah House, but the experience also brought our staff and faculty closer together.”

globe university sioux falls

Globe University-Sioux Falls staff and faculty volunteers

Sioux Falls Campus Director Aimee Miritello seconds Zobel’s comment, adding “it’s nice to see how a little effort can go a long way in helping those in our community. When you see the little things and how they affect others, it really puts into perspective how we can be making a difference everyday, all year long.”

This small token of service is the least we can do for those who have sacrificed so much with service to our country. We have an obligation as a military-friendly school, with over 15 percent of the student population having served, to assist our service men and women whenever needed. Globe University shows “We Care” whether it is cleaning windows, picking up trash, dusting, or providing a quality education with flexible benefits to help military students advance their career.