Our homeowners are as unique as their needs
Updated: Jan 20
In 2019, we received 46 applications from homeowners requesting our help. Among these applicants, 89 percent indicated that they or a member of the household had a disability and 30 percent included a veteran or military spouse. A closer look at our applicant data from last year also tells us that 72 percent of those residing in these households were women, 25 percent were seniors, and 19 percent were children under the age of 18.
But numbers only scratch the surface of each of our homeowners’ stories. Like the unique repairs needed at each of their homes, these three women have traveled difficult roads and are still persevering to keep a roof over their heads.
Sharon quit her job in Seattle and moved in with her mother in Olympia to care for her while she struggled with Alzheimer’s. After her mother passed away, Sharon volunteered at the Olympia Senior Center, but is now battling her own health issues and can no longer do so. Her son, who suffered a heart attack and has severe diabetes, is living with Sharon in the mobile home she inherited from her mother. Her son, even with his poor health, tried to fix severe plumbing leaks that developed underneath the home. Unable to repair the leaks and unable to afford a plumber, they turned off the water to their home to prevent further water damage to the floors and structure, as well as to prevent a large water bill. For weeks, they had no water for cooking, bathing, laundry, etc. Senior Services referred Sharon to us and we contacted Springer Plumbing
to repair the pipes. Springer did a fabulous job for us, as always. Bruce Keough and the men’s group from First United Methodist Church built a ramp to the home to provide the pair safer and easier access.
Karen lives in Olympia. She tries hard to maintain her home, which isn’t easy on a limited budget of less than $17,000 a year. Gorilla Glue is her favorite and most affordable solution for repairing items in her home. When a leak underneath her sink became so bad that glue couldn’t solve the problem, she contacted us. It took our volunteers almost an hour to chip the glue off the pipe to access it and stop the leak. Our volunteers also installed a high profile toilet and tackled a couple of other projects. Next, we’ll replace a window in her garage that was broken during an attempted break in. On Rebuilding Day, we hope to replace her 40 year old stove that is a safety hazard due to issues of electrical arcing.
Iris lives in Littlerock in an older mobile home. Two of her windows have failed and one of them was causing water damage to the wall and siding. We have replaced the two windows, fixed the leak issue, and repaired the siding. We have preserved her home, prevented further damage, and provided energy efficient windows that will allow her to stay warm and reduce energy costs, which is very important for someone living on less than $10,000 a year.
These stories are just a snapshot of the challenges our homeowners face. Last year, we completed 41 critical repair projects and seven Rebuilding Day projects. If you’d like to join our volunteer team to help repair homes, revitalize communities, and rebuild lives, contact us today!