My husband and I have family and friends that are in the military. My husband Todd has a brother that severed in the Marines and he is very proud of him. Todd and I both have worked for the last 17 plus years of our marriage looking for a way to honor his brother and all our friends and family that have severed our country with such honor.
We have both seen firsthand how our government lets our veterans down and we both along with our current friends want to provide services for those veterans where our government does not. We know for sure that if a veteran is homeless they are able to apply for assistants with Veterans Affairs, but in order for them to receive assistants from the VA they are placed onto a list and they have to wait for well over 18 months before they are able to receive assistants for housing. So during that time they are homeless for 18 months or longer. Our veterans deserve better than that from our government, so if they are not able to get it from them, we all have to steep up and provide it for them.
This is why we are working to create a tiny home community for our veterans and their families while they wait to receive housing from the VA. Join us in helping to provide them with a safe home to live by making a donation or volunteering with our tiny home community project.
Our Friend and Board of Director had passed away after surgery on January 11, 2019. Micheal was a great friend and a large part of our organization. He honestly believed in supporting our veterans, and looked forward to assisting us in providing our veterans and their families a tiny home and a fresh start in their life’s. He will be deeply missed. God Bless our friend!
Harlin came to Veterans Christian Network as a recipient of the organization’s assistance during a tough time in his life. Not only was he given assistance to take care of financial matters in his home, but he was also offered a position within the organization to help assist other veterans and their families in their time in need. Harlin accepted the position of Vice President with a grateful heart, and a renewed motivation to help fellow veterans.
Harlin would stay assigned in the 82nd Airborne Division until November 1991 after serving in 2 units there, as he would be assigned in Yong-San, South Korea from November 1991 to November 1992. After that stint, he would return to Fort Bragg to work in a “Special Operations” unit from January to November of 1993…afterwards, he would separate from Active Duty to pursue a college education and post-Army life. He would ultimately leave the Army in 1999, where he would be awarded an “Honorable Discharge”.
Since his time in the Army, Harlin has attended and graduated from Columbia College in downtown Chicago with a Bachelor’s Degree in Liberal Arts…with a concentration in Radio and Broadcast Journalism. While attending Columbia College, he met his now wife, Kendra, whom he would marry in 1998. Harlin and Kendra are both Columbia College Chicago graduates, and have 3 children together. He has worked professionally in Chicago radio, and works as a freelance radio news reporter. He works full-time as a public aid eligibility assistant for the Illinois Department of Human Services.
Mr. Atkinson after speaking with the founders of Veterans Christian Network he had seen their vision for helping veterans and their families. and decided to join them as a board member. Mr. Atkinson seen their business plan and strategic plan, and he felt with his experience as a Director of Strategic Systems Development (after 31years) he could assist them to better develop the plans they have envisioned for the veterans they are helping now and will help in the near future. He is really excited to start moving forward with building this organization and their plans to build a veterans only tiny home community in the very near future.
The experience that Mr. Atkinson brings a wealth of information and knowledge with him. He had retired after 31 years of employment with Navistar Corporation, and he has 2 adult children and has been married to Carol for 54 years, and has lived in Wheaton, IL. since March of 1981. He enjoys gardening, fishing, and watching sports (particularly the Cubs and Bears).
Todd Olshefski is a person that really enjoys helping people that have served in the military. He has family that did severe in the USMC and has friends that did also served in the USMC. Todd did lose a friend that was in combat while in the USMC. Todd had another friend come home after seeing combat, and he was a changed man. He was on drugs, in and out of jail, and homeless. Then that friend called Todd and Priscilla asking for help, because he was homeless, and he realized that he needed some real help so he decided to call Todd and Priscilla.
They talked about it and decided to help him with conditions that he got treatment for his drug use and other problems. Now that friend owns his own business, a house, and has a wife and kids. That is when Todd and Priscilla decided to see if they can help other veterans. They both decided if they could help one veteran how many more could they help. That is how they decided to start Veterans Christian Network to help other veterans, and that is how there idea of creating a veterans only tiny home community was planned. When it comes to Todd and Priscilla reaching goals, nothing stops them, When people say negative commitments it motivates us more. Success is determined by how you handle your setbacks, and we are going to push forward and never give up. We believe in ourselves and we’re determined to reach our goals.