Rebuilding Together South Sound hosted volunteers to complete 26 major home repair and safety modification projects throughout the South Sound on National Rebuilding Day, April 28. On North Highland Street, one team worked on Creasie Jones’ home, providing a variety of work such as leveling a porch, repairing and repainting a bathroom, restoring landscaping and cleaning out an overcrowded garage, sorting most of the contents in to either a refuse bin or donation trailer. Much of the work focused on removing and replacing failing siding.
“Most of us have been together for about 15 years,” said team volunteer coordinator Evan Boulanger, of Patriot Fire Protection.
The team gathers on National Rebuilding day and completes a large amount of work in a single day. For some of the team the event is a family affair. Joe Storm, a general contractor from Enumclaw, leads the work on the siding. His sister and brother-in-law Sarah and Sam Tower have been part of this team for years, as has his son Trevor. “My daughter would be here today, but she has a cross-country event,” he said.
Creasie Jones watched the progress of the workers and contributed thoughts on what items in the garage should be donated or destroyed and enjoyed the ability to move around her garage now that most of the contents had been moved into the refuse bin.
“I tried three times to refinance my home. I could not afford to pay for the repairs,” she said. She recently lost both her adult son and her husband and has been without help to clean and repair her home. “I am just so grateful to these volunteers,” she said as she watched a worker take a lamp from the garage to the donation pile.
Rebuilding Together, a leading national nonprofit in safe and healthy housing that provides low-income homeowners with critical home repairs, involved nearly 40,000 volunteers at more than 1,600 rebuild projects throughout National Rebuilding Month. The effort involved 26 major home repair and safety modification projects throughout the South Sound. The repairs come free of charge to the homeowners, who often face diminishing resources and choose food and medicine over critical home repairs – choices that, over time, can lead to crumbling foundations, dangerously sagging roofs and windows and doors that can’t be securely shut.