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UC Habitat Working To Get Senior Program Running Again

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
UC Habitat Working To Get Senior Program Running Again

Upper Cumberland Habitat for Humanity is looking to get its Senior Renovation Program restarted after grant money funding the program ran out.

A state grant originally funded the “Aging in Place” program for Habitat affiliates statewide. Director of Development Allison Smith said those funds dried up in October of last year. She said since then the organization has been trying to figure out how to restart the program.

“We are definitely planning on bringing it back and doing those programs because it is something that Habitat firmly believes in,” Smith said. “We just need to find the funding.”

Smith said they are exploring and applying for new grants. She said they are also coming up with fundraiser ideas to help replenish the funds for the program.

“We put some paperwork in the process this morning for some new funding,” Smith said. “We are regularly applying for funds and grant money, and we have to get a certain amount before we put it out there to the public that we can do some projects.”

Smith said she has people come in and ask about the program regularly. She said she keeps their names on file so when the program starts back up that they begin working their way through the projects.

“We have one to two seniors walk into our office on a weekly basis needing, whether it be roof repair, HVAC or some grab bars or a wheel chair ramp installed in their homes, and we can’t promise or guarantee or take on any of those projects if we don’t have a good foundation of funding set up ahead of time,” Smith said.

Smith said the Aging in Place Program was started two years ago with an initiative by Jimmy Carter to get all of Habitat involved. The goal was to help keep elderly adults in their home by offering to do home repairs and upgrades.

“He saw the need and saw the opportunity with Habitat, and the fact that we build from the ground up,” Smith said. “When we are in between building or mother nature is not so kind and she’s raining down on us, we can go inside a house and put some grab bars in. It really opened up the opportunity to really be able to fund both programs under the Habitat umbrella.”

Smith said anybody over the age of 55 that owns a home and needs repairs can stop by the Upper Cumberland Habitat office and get put on the waiting list.


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