Neighbors Helping Neighbors on Rebuilding Together Dutchess County’s Fall Rebuilding Day
For thirty years, Rebuilding Together Dutchess County has repaired the homes of low-income Dutchess County residents with the help of volunteers from local businesses, PTA’s, churches, and more. The volunteers give their time to help their neighbors in need – neighbors helping neighbors.
The connection to and involvement in our community is apparent during the nonprofit’s Rebuilding Days, which happen twice a year – once in April and once in the Fall. October 22nd marked this year’s Fall Rebuilding Day, during which volunteer teams from Consigli Construction and Central Hudson Gas & Electric made critical home repairs for two Dutchess County families.
John (73) and Susan (69) are life-long Dutchess County residents who worked diligently to maintain their Poughkeepsie home. When John’s health declined and required multiple surgeries and a long recovery period, their medical bills started to pile up and they had no choice but to put off necessary home repairs they would have previously taken care of.
John had installed plexiglass on their aging windows, but it wasn’t enough, so Susan would stuff newspaper in the gaps to help minimize the cold drafts that were impacting John. The back steps were lifting away from the house and became so unsafe that Susan wouldn’t allow anyone to step out on to them. Consigli Construction was able to replace the aging windows and the back steps, among many other repairs, giving the homeowners piece of mind. As Susan said, “All that weight that was on our shoulders – it left.” This, she said, was what they felt when they heard that they had been accepted into the Rebuilding Day program by Rebuilding Together.
In Hyde Park, Central Hudson made the bathroom more accessible for Paul (86) and Carolyn (82) with a hi-rise toilet and grab bars, replaced old, unreliable smoke alarms, secured a handrail, repaired the front walkway, and painted the front porch. Paul has lived in that home his entire life and the couple have been married for 64 years. These types of repairs are now beyond Paul’s ability, so he was grateful for all the work the volunteers did: “I wouldn’t have been able to do these things without them, that’s for sure.” In addition, the couple’s roof was replaced through a previous Lowe’s Veterans at Home grant.
In all, forty volunteers from Central Hudson and Consigli Construction took the time to make these repairs and a difference in these homeowner’s lives. It comes full circle when one thinks about how these homeowners have spent their lives here, raised children here, and worked and volunteered here in Dutchess County.
Rebuilding Together Dutchess County executive director Darcy McCourt explains that “Rebuilding Together makes a distinct impact in the community because of the involvement and support of so many. Local volunteers give back to help those who have invested their lives into this area and the organizations who provide the funding see the importance of that. Our work builds relationships and connections within the community – something we could really use more of right now.”
Funding for each of these projects were provided by Central Hudson, Consigli Construction, Dutchess County, and Lowe’s. Other supporters, that contributed in-kind donations and services, include Herring Sanitation, Recycle Depot, and Veith Electric.
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