Volunteers team up to Rebuild Together
Published 4:38 pm, Wednesday, June 17, 2015
Christmas came early this year for Debbie Brown-Marquardt of New Milford.
More than 100 volunteers worked this spring to make repairs to her home so she could enjoy simple things such as heat, hot water and listening to the rain outside, rather than the drip, drip, drip of water indoors.
One weekend, skilled and unskilled volunteers from Rebuilding Together Litchfield County worked as a team to finish extensive repairs to Ms. Brown-Marquardt’s home.
Her husband died 15 months ago and, towards the end of his life, he had been unable to keep up with home repairs.
This past winter, there were holes in her roof. When it snowed, it would blow in and pile up in a corner of her living room.
The furnace had stopped working and she had no heat or hot water.
Formerly known as the Christmas in April organization, it provides home repairs to the elderly and informed so they may continue to live independently.
When Webb visited the home, she saw the need for extensive repairs.
Working together with Sear’s Heroes at Home program, she was able to pull together funding and in-kind donations to put a new roof on the home, weather proof the exterior and completely gut and install a new bathroom.
Because of limited funding, Ms. Webb planned to put off replacing the furnace.
However, Joanie Quellet of B & D Controlled Air of New Milford offered a solution. F.W. Webb of Waterbury would donate a new furnace and hot water system and B & D would donate the manpower to remove the old furnace and install the new one.
Rebuilding Together also did repairs to seven other homes throughout Litchfield County this spring, ranging from installing hand holds in bathrooms to ramps so an elderly couple can use their front door.
Understandably, Brown-Marquardt was very pleased with everyone’s help and support.
“It is when a community comes together to help one another that you see the best they have to offer,” she said.
Those from Rebuilding Together felt a sense of satisfaction from their efforts.
“Because of some incredibly generous people,” remarked Webb, “we are able to ensure Debbie can continue to live in a safe, weather-proof home.”