ORGANIZING GROUPS OF VOLUNTEERS TO HELP LWO-INCOME HOMEOWNERS IN NEED OF CRITICAL HOME REPAIRS
AURORA–Spring is usually my time to come out of hibernation with a renewed energy to clean, organize and take note of home and yard improvements needed, always hoping it is not something vital that will give us a big bill. However, what we probably don’t hear much about is the many neighborhood homes that are in dire need of vital repairs and whose owners may not be able to afford to fix them. There is a secret epidemic of people, seniors, Veterans and families with young children, living in homes without basic plumbing, the ability to cook, without accessibility and with problems that cause health hazards.
Rebuilding Together Aurora has made it their mission to organize groups of volunteers to help low-income homeowners in need of critical home repairs. “Our work takes a direct and thorough approach to tackling these problems, home by home, to ensure no one lives in fear of a catastrophic injury and that children can thrive free of dangers like lead poisoning and asthma,” says Heather Binder, Executive Director of Rebuilding Together Aurora. “A healthier community in which people can thrive benefits us all.”
Rebuilding Together Aurora began as a “Christmas in April” in 1993 when a group of Notre Dame alumni came together and, using their own funds, teamed up to help identify these homes and assist their owners with the repairs needed. Since then, the organization, working year-round, has repaired nearly 1,500 homes and invested over $3 million worth of added value into affordable properties in working class neighborhoods. Funds for materials come from community members, corporate sponsors and grants so that each low-income home can be repaired at no cost. Those dollars, along with funds raised at their annual Bags Tournament in September as well as their TopGolf event in October, go directly to carrying out their mission.
Rebuilding Together Aurora brings together volunteers of all abilities and skill levels, from teenagers to skilled trade professionals. Saturday, April 30th is National Rebuilding Day. In Aurora, hundreds of volunteers will team up to repair homes and deliver over $100,000 worth of lasting improvements and accessibility modifications. Everyone is invited to join them or make a tax-deductible contribution to their materials fund. For more information on this event, volunteering or donations, please visit www.rtaaurora.org