Article Written by our Business of the Quarter, Brian Conley Veterans Resiliency Center
When Major Kevin Conley returned from Afghanistan in 2010, he had a dream. After working his way through the military and VA bureaucracies, he wanted to help other Veterans avoid the nightmare he was put through. He was medically retired from the U.S. Army at the age of 44 in 2014 due to his multiple medical issues incurred while on active duty. Because of his experiences and lessons learned, Kevin Conley has acquired a unique understanding of what a Veteran and his family face when returning from active duty.
Nine surgeries and psychological scars of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) took a toll on Kevin and his family and as they struggled for answers, they met others that were experiencing the same things. The Conley’s started a peer support group and started helping others with small home repairs such as installing a fence for a service dog, constructing a wheelchair ramp and installing a garage door.
In November 2016, the Conley’s purchased the late 1800 home at 104 S. Broad Street, Middletown, DE that now houses The Brian Conley Veterans Resiliency Center, named after Kevin’s brother who lost his battle with brain cancer in 2015. As he fought his battle with this disease, he never gave up hope. It is this resiliency that we hope our veterans will emulate as they fight through their struggles.
When purchased, The Brian Conley Veterans Resiliency Center was just a shell of a house with no interior walls, no electric, no plumbing, no HVAC. With the generosity of the community donating over $300,000 and 100’s of volunteers working 1000’s of hours, WHW opened the center in April 2019 and now houses up to 14 homeless male veterans.
The Brian Conley Veterans Resiliency Center serves all veterans and their families. We provide programs that enhance their living conditions; either through residential placement in our center or another center or by providing services that improve their life skills, such as financial planning, job placement, family reunification, counseling, support groups, etc.
We take a holistic approach and address the full person(s) not just individual needs. Since our director, Kevin Conley, has traveled that road, he has unique experience in navigating through the systems and uses his knowledge in walking the veterans and their families through the process. If needed he hand holds the veterans and accompanies them at their appointments and helps them through the appeal process. We estimate 100 individuals a year will be serviced through at least one of our programs. We focus not only on the veteran but also the veterans’ families. We service every veteran and family member that asks for our assistance.
You can visit us on facebook and our website (www.whwonline.org) for more information and to donate to The Brian Conley Veterans Resiliency Center so we can continue our mission to “Win The Battle At Home.” Please call us at 302-696-2318 if you are a veteran who needs assistance or if you know a veteran struggling.
Read the full magazine here: https://www.veteransoutreachministries.org/vom-magazine/