June 6, 2013
Cooke's manor provides a transitional housing program in an alcohol/drug free environment for men, giving priority to veterans. Most residents are homeless due to alcoholism and drug addiction. The facility provides 40 private rooms in a building located on the Veterans Administration campus. The programming includes structured days, balanced meals in a communal dining area, rehabilitative work training, individual counseling, recovery groups, holistic education, pre-employment training, employment opportunities including assistance with resumes and job placement, and assistance with permanent housing placement. Minimal rent is charged. Veterans are required to have completed an inpatient treatment program or had a successful period of sobriety.
On June 6, 2013, nearly 20 Veteran residence came to support the meal packaging event. With funds received from Loyola Hospital, Cooke's manor residence packaged over 3,456 meals. These meals were donated to St. Eulalia's and Rock of Ages Church both in Maywood, IL.
With military precision - and an obvious passion to support their hungry and homeless comrades - the veterans embraced the mission, rapidly mastering the assembly procedures, and ramping up to peak production rates. Much like military maneuvers - or team sports - meal packaging requires logistical coordination, quality control, harmonious collaboration, cross-training, and unit cohesion and support. Impressively, the veterans were naturals.