The spirit of the holidays certainly hit home for a local non-profit last week. Volunteers of America accepted a $50,000 grant from the First Interstate BancSystem Foundation. The money has been designated for many of the programs in the veterans services area in both Montana and Wyoming. VOA recently completed Freedom Hall here in Sheridan and has a similar project in Billings, Montana. Foundation Chairman Randy Scott gave high praise to the VOA program and its focus on making veterans ready to re-enter the community.
VOA President Jeff Holsinger accepted the check last week and hopes that a gift of that size will encourage other donations, as well. The veterans services with VOA involve more than just the community shelter and Freedom Hall. Many times participants have to re-learn life skills that will put them on a strong and independent footing.
The current large deployment from Wyoming and the possible surge in troops headed overseas could make the VOA services in much higher demand once those troops start to make their way home.