For many homeowners, making household repairs can be a daunting and cost-prohibitive task. In addition to searching for and securing a qualified contractor, this process may include several weeks when a home may be uninhabitable. However, in celebration of National Rebuilding Day – April 30, 2016 – more than 3,500 volunteers applied a day’s-worth of elbow grease to make major repairs in various low-income households in Chicago. Primera was there to help make a difference in the lives of two families in the Austin neighborhood.
Primera gathered more than 25 of its employees to volunteer and participate in this year’s National Rebuilding Day, to help complete home repair projects for two low-income and elderly residents so that they may continue to live in warmth, safety and independence. Our first house belonged to that of deserving homeowner Mary Mullins, who lives with her two daughters, in their Austin home. House captain and Primera Electrical Designer, Louis DeAlba, spent weeks prior to build day helping to pre-plan the day’s project assignments which included: a complete kitchen remodel, bathroom and porch improvements, painting, gutter installation, and some yard and landscaping improvements as well.
Our second home was in partnership with the Illinois chapter of ASHRAE – the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers. House captain and Primera Energy Engineer, Mallory Schaus worked with homeowner Gloria Williams on deciding what needed improvements at her Austin residence. Together with volunteers from both ASHRAE and Primera, the team was able to provide major improvements to the kitchen, dining room, bathrooms, and bedrooms, and repair various dilapidated areas to the exterior of the house.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel spent part of the day touring some of the homes and meeting with rebuilding team volunteers to thank them for their efforts. “Primera has always had a deep commitment to making our communities stronger, lives safer and futures brighter, which is why we participate in events like Rebuilding Together,” said Erin Inman, Primera’s new President & CEO. “We’re grateful that Ms. Mullins and Ms. Williams and their families welcomed us into their homes and helped us continue our tradition of making community involvement a part of our culture.” While Primera has partnered with Rebuilding Together for many years, this is the fourth year in a row which we were privileged enough to sponsor a home of our own, and just the second time that we were able to help at two homes.
Rebuilding Together Metro Chicago is an affiliate of Rebuilding Together, the nation’s largest volunteer organization dedicated to preserving and revitalizing low-income houses and communities, and one of more than 200 chapters across the country. Each year, in preparation for National Rebuilding Day, Rebuilding Together Metro Chicago recruits and trains sponsor teams, identifies and screens homeowner applicants, raises private funds for building materials, and coordinates the logistics of a volunteer effort that encompasses over 3,500 people. Since 1991, Rebuilding Together Metro Chicago has repaired more than 1,300 homes and 200 community facilities with the assistance of tens of thousands of volunteers. Collectively, Rebuilding Together affiliates have completed work on more than 100,000 homes and engaged 3.4 million volunteers to deliver $1.3 billion in market value since its founding in 1988.
For additional information about Rebuilding Together Metro Chicago please visit: www.rebuildingtogether-chi.com.