U.S. veterans return to Vietnam to build homes and heal wounds with Habitat for Humanity
ATLANTA (April 10, 2012) – Nearly 40 years after the end of the Vietnam War, 22 veterans returned to Vietnam—many for the first time—to build Habitat for Humanity homes with families in need in Tien Giang province.
Vietnam War veteran Vic Romback works on a Habitat home in Vietnam’s Tien Giang province. He is one of nearly two dozen veterans currently working on the first Habitat for Humanity Vietnam Veterans Build.
Organized by Habitat for Humanity International and officially supported by Vietnam Veterans of America, this two-week build event includes veterans and their families and has been a moving experience filled with challenges and rewards.
“We returned from Vietnam to a hostile America that did not want to hear about the war. In our silence, we buried a lot of ghosts,” said Neal Pointer, a Vietnam veteran and trip participant. “Now, forty years later, it’s time to go back, this time to rebuild instead of destroy.”
The build is part of Habitat’s national Veterans Initiative aimed at providing veteran and military families housing solutions, as well as volunteer and employment opportunities.
“Habitat for Humanity International is honored to partner with American veterans to build homes with the residents of Tien Giang, Vietnam,” said Christopher Ptomey, director of federal relations for Habitat for Humanity International. “Habitat is grateful for the strong support for this initiative provided by its donors and volunteers and looks forward to providing more opportunities for our veterans to build homes and communities around the world.”
About Habitat for Humanity International
Habitat for Humanity International is a global nonprofit Christian housing organization that seeks to put God’s love into action by bringing people together to build homes, communities and hope. Since 1976, Habitat has served more than 500,000 families by welcoming people of all races, religions and nationalities to construct, rehabilitate or preserve homes; by advocating for fair and just housing policies; and by providing training and access to resources to help families improve their shelter conditions. For more information, to donate or to volunteer, please visit www.habitat.org, or follow us at www.facebook.com/habitat or at www.twitter.com/habitat_org or join Habitat’s blog community at www.habitat.org/blog.