FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — When female veterans walk through the doors of the new Reveille Retreat home in Fayetteville, they should feel cherished and energized.

That's the vision of Travis Pearson, president and CEO of Family Endeavors, which renovated Reveille Retreat from its former shell of the Jubilee House on Langdon Street. The new home, which could open early next year, will have space for eight families, or up to 24 homeless veteran mothers and children.

"I want them to feel acceptance, I want them to pick up a sense of hope," Pearson said. "By the time someone comes to this program, if you take a minute to think what they had to go through to get that down on their luck where they're completely broke, in debt, homeless, kids are behind in school, to have a place where they'll be able to get better at their speed and they'll have practical, innovative resources to get there, it's just a blessing."

The home was built in 2011 amid fanfare as part of ABC's "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.? It fell on hard times and was vacant for a while.

Family Endeavors, a local organization dedicated to serving homeless veterans, bought the home in 2016 with plans to use it and other properties to serve as transitional housing for veterans.

Earlier this year, the organization said it could take as long as three years to finish extensive repairs and renovations needed to reopen the home. They still need $400,000 to complete renovations that repaired water damage from Hurricane Matthew, handicap-accessible features and to bring structural safety up to standard.

The home features private bedrooms, handicap-accessible bathrooms, a communal kitchen and living space, an inside play area for small children and a garden in the backyard.

In addition to housing, Family Endeavors will provide case management, parenting education, mental health counseling, employment/education coaching and self-sufficiency skills.

According to the organization, $250,000 annually is required to run those programs.

The project was a priority for Family Endeavors because Pearson said he recognized a need to serve female veterans, which was the initial focus of the former home.

"It's an honor to come in and pick up on the original vision the community had and keep it here and take it to the next steps," Pearson said. "Women veterans have a place where they can catch their breath and get back on their feet, get their lives back together. It's a blessing."

On Wednesday, Family Endeavors opened the home for a sneak peek for community leaders.

Glenn Adams, chairman of the Cumberland County Board of Commissioners, lauded Family Endeavors for stepping up to take over the home.

"You all stepped in when there was a critical need," he said. "You invested. You invested in this community. You invested into the lives of people of this community and we will be forever indebted to you.?

For information on how to apply for a spot at Reveille Retreat, go to familyendeavors.org.


Information from: The Fayetteville Observer, http://www.fayobserver.com