HomeAid Northern Virginia and Richmond American Homes recently completed the total renovation of the kitchen in one of Gabriel Homes’ townhouses that houses three men with intellectual disabilities. Builder Captain Richmond American Homes, along with 10 trade partners, gutted the kitchen and installed new granite countertops, cabinets, sink and faucet, flooring, and light fixtures. The team also addressed safety concerns by upgrading electrical wiring, and reconfiguring the laundry room in order to shorten and straighten a problematic dryer vent.
“One of our main goals is to help promote independence for our residents by providing drop-in support for medical, health, welfare and skill-building so that they can live as independently as possible and integrate into the community. And although the renovation of this kitchen had been on our wish list for six years, we were very concerned that our residents would find the disruption in their routine extremely stressful,” said Rebecca Hartner, director of Gabriel Homes. “We needn’t have worried: Richmond American and their partners were absolutely amazing. They were respectful, kind and did everything they could to make the process easy for the men.”
Chris Myrick, regional trade agent for Richmond American Homes, said that agreeing to lead the project was an easy decision: “There’s always people in more need, and as builders, we feel that if we’re going to be part of a community, we need to do good for the community. Our trade partners felt the same way, and we all chipped in and got it done. It gave us all a sense of relief, knowing how much we were helping people.”
The $8,600 project represents an enormous savings for Gabriel Homes, but even more important is the restored sense of dignity the improvements give.
“As director of Gabriel Homes, the face we show to the community is so important,” Hartner added, “and ‘group homes’ carry a negative connotation. When inspectors come to our homes, they often express surprise at how nice they are. Isn’t that the way it’s supposed to be? Just because someone has a disability doesn’t mean that they don’t deserve the same standard of living that [the rest of us] do. HomeAid and its partners have enabled that. They undo the stigma.”
|Thanks to Builder Captain Richmond American Homes and to all of the trade partners for the Gabriel Homes project!|