Volunteers of America Ohio & Indiana to Build Affordable Housing for Cleveland Veteran Community

CLEVELAND, OHIO (May 18, 2021)

Volunteers of America Ohio & Indiana (VOAOHIN) today announced plans to build a new affordable housing community in Cleveland’s Glenville Neighborhood. The new multi-family housing community will serve women veterans.

The new veteran-centric affordable housing is being named as a tribute to U.S. Marine Corps Veteran and Cleveland native, Judge Sara J. Harper. Judge Harper served as the first ever female military judge in the history of the Marine Corp Reserve and the first African American woman to graduate from Case Western Reserve University’s School of Law.

Located on Lee Avenue, Judge Sara J. Harper Village, will consist of two buildings of 12 carefully designed, efficiency-style apartments. Each building will be approximately 3,000 square-feet and will house six, one-bedroom apartments, including a two-bedroom suite for women with children.


According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, women make up the fastest growing segment of the homeless veteran population with an estimated 1 in 4 experiencing military sexual trauma.

“Judge Sara J. Harper Village will provide affordable housing for the community’s most underserved segment of the veteran population and help meet the unique needs of women veterans as they return to civilian life. We are honored to provide a safe place for women veterans to heal and rebuild their lives.”

John R. von Arx III
President & CEO
Volunteers of America Ohio & Indiana

Volunteers of America Ohio & Indiana will make important interventions available such as access to affordable housing, health care, and treatment for mental health and substance use disorder to help prevent homelessness among women veterans.

“Making sure all people are aware of their basic human rights has been paramount to the values held by Judge Harper. Defending those rights has been our mother’s passion. She has been an uncontested warrior for justice for Black people and especially for women and children,” Constance Trumbo Haqq, eldest daughter of Judge Sara J. Harper.

“Our job is to make sure Cleveland residents, especially our veterans and their families, can access safe and affordable quality housing,” said Mayor Frank G. Jackson. “Through the Glenville Housing Initiative, not only can we provide veterans and their children with necessary housing, but we can go beyond that to provide medical care, counseling, employment services and other essential resources that address the root causes of homelessness and improve quality of life.”

“This project is a welcome addition to the Glenville community and the City of Cleveland,” said State Representative Terrence Upchurch (D-Cleveland). “This housing has real impact and is meeting the needs of veterans and families in our state with innovation and sustainability.”

“It is often said, a soldier never leaves another soldier on the battlefield, we shouldn't leave her on the streets of America, either. Our Veterans accepted the responsibility to defend America, and Cuyahoga County is stepping up to defend veteran housing needs. We are proud to welcome this important housing into our Glenville community,” in a joint statement from Yvonne Conwell, Cuyahoga County Council and Councilman, Kevin Conwell.

Volunteers of America Ohio & Indiana has secured funding for the project from public and private sources including the Federal Home Loan Bank of Pittsburgh and its member bank, PNC, The Home Depot Foundation, and other community foundations and corporations.

The project is expected to break ground early summer with completion anticipated in early 2022.

Learn more about 
Judge Sara J. Harper Village



About Volunteers of America Ohio & Indiana
Volunteers of America is one of the nation’s largest, established comprehensive human services organizations with 16,000 mission-driven professionals, dedicated to helping those in need rebuild their lives and reach their full potential. Founded in 1896, the faith-based nonprofit has programs in 46 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, and serves more than 1.5 million people a year.

At Volunteers of America Ohio & Indiana, we are dedicated to helping people achieve well-being by offering hope, restoring dignity, and transforming lives, to ensure communities thrive. For 125 years, we have been uplifting individuals, families, and communities including veterans, homeless individuals and families, men and women returning home after incarceration, low-income seniors, and those recovering and healing from addiction. Our work touches the mind, body, heart – and ultimately the spirit – of those we serve, integrating our deep compassion with highly effective programs and services. To learn more about our work, visit www.voaohin.org.