Quest CEO Leonard Adams appeared on Good Day Atlanta to talk about their relationship with The Home Depot Foundation and their recognition of the very special veterans that are residents at Quest Communities Veteran's Village.
Quest CEO, Leonard Adams and FOX5-Atlanta's, Buck Lanford discuss the upcoming honor at this years’ Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl.
Lanford- For almost 20 years, Quest Community Development has been changing lives one family at a time. Now some of their residents, members of our military are going to be honored by the Home Depot Foundation in this years’ Peach Bowl at Mercedes Benz Stadium. Joining us this morning is Quest CEO, Leonard Adams to tell us about the holiday surprise. “Good Morning How are you today sir?
Adams- Good Morning Buck. how are you this morning?
Lanford- Doing Great. So Let’s start with this: What is the Quest
Communities Veterans Village and where is it?
Adams- Yes Buck. Quest Veterans Village is on the westside of Atlanta in the Vine City community. And this is program that we started in 2012 and it was to house homeless veterans that were living with the disability of mental illness, substance addiction, post-traumatic stress and/or all of them being homeless.
The Home Depot has been a great partner since 2012 and we have been able to foster a long-term relationship with them. And we are very excited that this year for the Home Town Heroes Program - they are honoring the veterans at Quest Veterans Village and giving them an opportunity to participate in the Chick-fil-A Bowl.
Lanford- Very cool. Tell us about the recent give away to the veterans there. I know we have some video of this - what was a special and kind of emotional day?
Adams- Yes it was Buck. We were extremely excited to surprise the veterans this year for the holidays - particularly with what’s going on with COVID. We were able to surprise them with a Secret Santa. And with our social distancing capabilities we were able to invite them over as if were just coming to talk with them and we surprised each of the units and residents with everything form electronics to housewares - to clothing - to gift cards. I mean it was outstanding. And also the Home Depot Foundation stepped up and did a rental assistance program that allowed the veterans some rental relief for the months of November and December.
So we were very excited. It was very emotional. You’ve probably seen some of the video. The veterans were very happy and it really touched them. Remember all of these veterans have come from living on the streets. So, we were very excited to see them receive something for their service that they gave to our country.
Lanford- There was great stat - I was reading that you guys stated that 90% of your residents never return to homelessness. So what have been the keys to that success rate?
Adams- Yes. This is a great stat for us. It’s because this is a permanent supportive housing environment. And what I mean by that is that this is affordable rent that is based on the veterans’ income and then also - there’s wrap=around services to help them deal with anything that they are experiencing, due to the mental illness that I talked about earlier. Or. really just getting back into life coming from being homeless. So those wrap-around services connect with the affordable rental rates - we have a success rate of 90% not returning to homelessness.
Lanford- Very nice. So you are in your brand new 30,000sf Quest Impact Center that is going to open soon. How cool is that place?
Adams- This place is very cool. It’s walking distance from the Veterans Village. It’s a new impact center, a collective impact model made up of multiple nonprofits here in one location. And we are offering services from this hub to maximize our delivery system. Some of our partners here are On the Rise Financial Center, Quest Financial Services, Chris 180, and the Westside Empowerment Group. So we are looking to make sure that the westside has a place for those in need to come and receive resources and services. They will be able to come and receive those services in one location sand we can impact those North Stars on the westside collectively.
Lanford- We are almost out of time. One last question, although it is a two-parter. You are a veteran I understand - so what does it mean to you to not only see moments like you have been able to witness, but also to be honored at the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl? Also the second part: Who’s going to win - Georgia or Cincinnati?
Adams- I’ll start with the latter. It’s going to be Georgia. Hometown Heroes! - so yes, I am a veteran of the Gulf war and just to be able to give back to those who have experienced things that I have experienced. Just through the grace of God, I am not out here homeless as well. And, I was just very honored to use the platform as the founder of Quest to give back to those who have served this country.
Lanford- Leonard, thanks a lot for your time this morning, and for all the good work you’re doing.
Adams- Thank you Buck. Have a nice day. Happy Holidays!
Lanford- You too. Thank you!
About Quest Community Development Corporation
Quest is a comprehensive community development corporation on Atlanta’s Westside that provides socially equitable housing and supportive services, and coordinates a host of health, economic and social services for residents. We promote the concept that everyone deserves a strong foundation -- a safe home with an extensive social support network that allows all residents to thrive.
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