Jason Kander brings project to help veterans to St. Louis

Jason+Kander%2C+the+Jewish++Democrat+who+served+as+Missouris+secretary+of+state%2C+is+now+president+of+the+Veterans+Community+Project.

Jason Kander, the Jewish Democrat who served as Missouri’s secretary of state, is now president of the Veterans Community Project.

Eric Berger, Associate Editor

The Jewish former Missouri secretary of state broke ground Thursday in north St. Louis on the construction of 50 tiny homes to help veterans experiencing homelessness.

Jason Kander, a Democrat and veteran, serves as president of the Veterans Community Project. He was building a national political profile and running for mayor of Kansas City in 2018 before he dropped out of the race because he was struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder and depression, he said.

Kander is working to expand the organization’s services from Kansas City to eight cities by next year, according to his website.

The organization plans to build 50 tiny homes on a 3.5-acre site in the JeffVanderLou neighborhood.

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“Each tiny house provides everything a veteran needs to live with dignity and security; new furniture, appliances, housewares, bedding, personal items, and utilities — all free of charge,” the nonprofit states on its website. “The homes offer sanctuary and the emotional space needed for each veteran and [Veterans Community Project’s] specially-trained team to thoroughly address the underlying causes of his or her homelessness.”

The property will also feature an outreach center where veterans can receive emergency rent and utility assistance; food and hygiene kits; employment support; and benefits navigation, among other services.

Kander was joined at the event Thursday by St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones, among other local leaders.

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