Amanda Maniscalco

Dryhootch Seeks Donations For Vets

Its Brady Street coffeehouse, a key facility, is being renovated.

By - May 22nd, 2017 03:50 pm
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Dryhootch rendering.

Dryhootch rendering.

In 2010, Dryhootch opened its first coffeehouse on E. Brady Street. Dryhootch is a non-profit organization formed by veterans who work with other veterans and their families to help them transition to civilian life back home. Its slogan is “Peer Support By Veterans For Veterans.”

The group’s name comes from “hootch” — military jargon for a hut or safe place to sleep during combat. And the coffeehouse is the ultimate dry hootch, a safe place for veterans to socialize, have some coffee, and familiarize themselves with the programs the organization offers.

But it’s been seven years since the coffeehouse opened and Dryhootch needs a face-lift to address some major wear-and-tear issues. The process of the renovation will be in three stages. The first stage, addressing the exterior of the coffeehouse, began in January of this year.

The organization is seeking financial help from the community to help support the first stage of this renovation. The goal is $75,000, and so far Dryhootch has only raised one-fifth of the total.

Sponsors receive an engraved plaque which would be fixed onto the area of the coffeehouse (or product) the donation helped to support.

“We are hopeful that the renovations will make our Dryhootch Coffeehouse more inviting, says Leah Lockett, the Director of Development for Dryhootch of America. The plans include taking better advantage of the building’s “extra-large courtyard’, which she notes is a unique feature for a building on densely-packed Brady Street. They hope to complete stage one of the renovations by the end of August.

Programs

While renovation is underway, Dryhootch Coffeehouse remains open for veterans seeking support. There are multiple programs available that provide a wide variety of services and a great deal of peer support, both from veterans that work there and those who come to visit.

Some programs help veterans find legal help or seek employment, some encourage their involvement within the community, and some help them locate a place to live.

The outreach program brings Dryhootch coffee and informed veterans to community events to explain the services the organization has to offer.

While Dryhootch is an alcohol- and drug-free environment, the group recognizes that addiction is a common issue for returning veterans, particularly those who suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Dryhootch has established numerous groups that recognize the issue of addiction, while addressing it safely and respectfully.

Dryhootch also offers great music and brings in artists to help veterans relax. Many come here to socialize, get help, and just drink a good cup of java. There are six different blends of coffee with names like Marine Mud, Navy Destroyer, and Special Forces Bold.

“We envision the coffeehouse as a place for veterans and community members to hangout, socialize, listen to music, and sit in front of the outdoor fireplace with a cup of coffee,” says Lockett.

The Dryhootch mission: “Helping Veterans and their families who survived the war; survive the peace.” Interested in donating? Check here for more information.

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