November 11 is the perfect time to celebrate and honor our brave and worthy Veterans! In the U.S., it’s Veterans Day and in Canada, it’s Remembrance Day, that special day to honor military heroes and Veterans, acknowledging the unpayable debt to all who serve in the Armed Forces, past and present. This Veterans Day is made even more special than usual for two severely injured Veterans who received new, specially adapted homes from Homes for Our Troops (HFOT) at the end of October.
Since 2004, HFOT has been building mortgage-free, specially adapted homes for the most severely injured Post-9/11 U.S. Veterans to help them with recovery and rebuilding their lives. In 2014, Budget Blinds®, along with manufacturing partner, Springs Window Fashions®, became a Corporate Sponsor to provide custom faux wood blinds for every home built. As part of the Home Franchise Concepts (HFC) Heart & Home initiative, it’s been an exciting partnership, with our Budget Blinds franchise owners across the country volunteering time and expertise to measure and install the window blinds for the home builds in their areas.
Making every house into a comfortable home
Home recipients have suffered such catastrophic injuries as multiple amputations, traumatic brain injury, full- and partial-paralysis, loss of hearing and sight, severe burns, and PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder). Lives have been turned upside down and plans and dreams have changed forever in a moment. Private individuals and Corporate Sponsors, like Budget Blinds, have joined HFOT’s mission by providing cash donations, volunteer services, and products so these homes can be built to the highest quality standards. Over 40 special adaptations make them ADA compliant; adaptations and enhancements include:
- Lowered countertops and wheelchair-accessible appliances
- Hardwood floors and wider doorways and hallways
- Roll-in showers and automatic doors
- Custom faux wood blinds to provide beauty, privacy, light control, and energy efficiency
It’s an honor and a privilege for HFC and Budget Blinds to join with HFOT and its many supporters to have a part in advancing recovery and rebuilding lives for severely injured Veterans and their families.
Meet Army Staff Sergeant Michael “Adam” Emory
SSG Adam Emory enlisted in the Army in 1998 at the age of 22, intending to make it his lifetime career. On deployment in Iraq in 2007, he was shot in the head by a sniper. He remembers being on mission and then waking up from a coma, but nothing in between. His injuries required a craniotomy and resulted in severe traumatic brain injury, causing paralysis on his left side.
Years of massage and therapy have restored some sensation on his left side and, with time, he has been able to return to the activities he loves, including sky diving, working on cars, drag racing, traveling, and spending time with his family. Adam expresses his gratitude to HFOT: “I’m humbled and touched, and I feel like I’m in debt to them. I’m grateful for everybody that’s donated, it’s amazing. Nothing will ever take away my injuries or experiences, but knowing people want to make my life better, makes it all worth it.”
This is the third HFOT home for Jeff and Kelli Owens, franchise owners of Budget Blinds of Northeast San Antonio. They have embraced the experience fully and Kelli shares: “Jeff and I are happy to have just completed our third home for Army SSG Adam Emory in Schertz, Texas. We are privileged to be a part of this program and give back just a little bit to the brave men and women who have fought for our country. We thank you for your service!”
Meet Marine Gunnery Sergeant Glen Silva
GYSGT Glen Silva joined the Marines in 1990 to be a part of something greater than himself. On a third deployment in 2010 to Afghanistan, he stepped on an improvised explosive device (IED) while on a foot patrol. He lost his left leg above the knee, suffered severe damage to his abdomen and left arm with partial amputation of his fingers, traumatic brain injury, and other injuries requiring three years at Bethesda Naval Hospital and Walter Reed Army Medical Center.
Medically retired since 2015, Glen continues to assist other Veterans through public speaking, giving them tools they need to continue to better their lives. He says, “The hurdles you have to overcome on a daily basis to continue to live and be productive are huge. Homes for Our Troops is the superhero when you don’t even know you need a superhero. I can never say thank you or put into words how much this incredible opportunity means to me and my family.”
For franchise owner Randy Hock, Budget Blinds serving Hanover, this is his second HFOT home and his team is totally onboard. Randy shares, “We’re glad to be a part of this project. It was awesome to see the impact and how life is changing for him due to HFOT. We, as a nation, are in debt to the great men and women who defend our freedom. Budget Blinds of Hanover is honored to stand with our military!”
Build a franchise business and help make a difference
Owning a business is the American Dream, and many people have realized that dream through franchise business ownership with the Home Franchise Concepts family of brands, including Budget Blinds®, Tailored Living®, Concrete Craft®, and AdvantaClean®. As individual franchise business owners, our franchisees have developed local partnerships as well as supporting the Heart & Home initiatives that are Home Office sponsored for giving back to their communities.
If you have a heart for helping others and giving back, owning a franchise business with HFC may be the pathway to a fulfilling career. Check out all the benefits of being a franchise owner with HFC. Call 1-800-420-5374 today or go online to Home Franchise Concepts and begin to see the real possibilities of owning your own franchise business.
- Learn more about the Budget Blinds and Homes for Our Troops partnership or make a secure donation: Budget Blinds Proudly Supports Homes for Our Troops.
For more information on HFOT’s ministry and the Veterans they serve, read the latest HFOT Foundations newsletter by clicking here.