Funding Goal - Brick & Mortar Location

Female Veterans Network - Secretary Cheryl Smith

FVN seeks a Safe Sanctuary for Female Veterans

Over the past three years, the Female Veterans Network (FVN) along with fantastic support from our generous Citrus County community, has reached our goal of establishing our monument at the Citrus County Courthouse. We are so grateful to know that this monument will serve to inform and enlighten all who take the time to visit it, with a sense of pride and honor for the brave and courageous women who have and will continue to serve our country. 

As female veterans, we share a unique bond between us that is somewhat different than that of our male comrade veterans. Historically, it is undeniable that women’s roles in our American society had been driven by certain responsibilities, expectations, and stigmas which put us in positions that “fit the norm of the times”.   Women who chose to serve in the military also had very limited choices in the beginning, and some, during the Revolutionary and Civil Wars, dressed as men in an effort to serve in arms with their male comrades.
Over the decades, in society – and in the military, this has changed significantly and as veterans, we consider our “foremothers” as true trailblazers. 

As of 2019, we have an estimated 1,250 female veterans living here in Citrus County. These women have served in WWII, the Korean War, Viet Nam, Grenada, Panama, the Gulf War, Afghanistan, Iraqi Freedom, and in peacetime. Our membership, however, is quite limited, given the number of female vets living here.

The mission of our organization is the following: “Female Veterans Network was formed to unite female veterans and develop camaraderie. In order to accomplish this, we provide a place to meet where we can discuss the issues and causes that are important and unique to female veterans. To develop solutions for them, as well as promote the sharing, and gathering of knowledge and information regarding female veterans from all branches of the military. Recognize and thank all the women who have served and are serving in the military today. We seek to help female veterans in need as well as be involved in our community. We honor our past and are focused on our future.”

In an effort to meet an important part of our mission and “provide a place to meet”, we are now striving to accomplish a new organizational goal. We seek a location where female veterans can have a safe, welcome, and supportive environment in which to share our experiences, attract other “sisters” who are unaware of our existence, and develop and nurture comradery. We provide each other with services such as, but not limited to, awareness of VA benefits that might help in day-to-day activities, transportation to Veterans’ medical appointments, or simply moral support for struggles related to health and general life issues. 

Today we are reaching out for a physical “brick and mortar” building that can become our “home”. Throughout the county, there are numerous visible vacant commercial properties that have remained unoccupied for at least a year.  FVN asks if a property owner might consider permitting us to utilize that space for our organization. As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit we hope an altruistic benefactor to this endeavor would step forward and gain personal and financial fulfillment by writing off the rent as a tax-deductible credit as well as the having the satisfaction of sponsoring our organization to occupy the space and keep it well maintained during a time when it is otherwise inoperative. 

We seek a space of approximately 2500 square feet. Ideally, we would like the space to be centrally located in Citrus County and equipped with a working bathroom, small kitchen, 1-2 offices, and a conference room, and a good-sized parking lot, located on the main thoroughfare in Citrus County.


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