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Hear From Our Neighbors

Meet Some of the Neighbors We Serve

REACH works with wonderful homeowners through our Community Builders Program - don’t let us convince you it’s a great program.  Read about what some of our neighbors have to say!

Joe & Christine Pennington
“My mother has been on cloud nine since last Saturday.  I honestly don’t know if I have ever seen her so happy.” Kind words from daughter Penny about how her mom, Christine Pennington, reacted when a team from the Community Builders Program came out to paint her home of 40 years in August 2011.  Additionally, we cleaned and repaired gutters, removed invasive plants, replaced broken electrical switches and made other safety repairs inside the home. 

Joe and Christine Pennington have lived in their N Portland home for over 40 years; raising their children and watching their grandchildren grow before their eyes in the family home.  The kids attended the local schools, with some having the opportunity to go on to college.  There is a lot of love in this family, but it seemed the house was in need of some love as well.  When the Community Builders Program met the Pennington’s, they were unable to get out their back door because it had rotted through, along with other code and safety violations.  The CBP partnered with Oregon Tradeswomen Inc. to fix their back porch and install needed safety aids.  Joe and Christine were so pleased with the results, they called back and asked if REACH could paint their house. 

“I heard about REACH from my transport driver. REACH had built a wheelchair ramp for her brother, and she thought they could do the same for me. After about six months on the waiting list, the Community Builders Program built a ramp. It was at no cost to me, and now I am able to leave my home! REACH has continued to care about me. Three years later, they came back to my house for the Paint and Repair-a-thon and stained the ramp. It is beautiful and has added to the appearance of my home.”
- Juquatter, Paint & Repair-a-thon 2009

Work Done:  Larry and Chuck’s, Elephant’s Deli volunteers stained ramp and upgraded electrical in her home.

LouiseLouise La Baugh
After 47 years of living in her own home, Louise La Baugh had begun to face significant challenges.  With severely impaired vision, she fell and broke her elbow while descending the stairs, which were in disrepair and lacked a handrail.

“I was desperate,” Louise said, “I didn’t want to move or sell my house. I didn’t know what to do.” Louise received a postcard in the mail from REACH’s Community Builders Program. She gave REACH a call, and after an on-site assessment, REACH found a lot of work needed to be done. Louise was overwhelmed by the team that showed up. Truck after truck arrived, until more than 25 people were standing in front of her house.  The volunteer team was headed by Trammell Crow Residential, a company that develops and constructs apartment buildings. They proceeded to clean up the yard, build the railings on staircases, install new light fixtures, and install grab bars in the shower, to name just a few of the repairs. “I was crying,” Louise says. “I never imagined they would do so much. They even washed my bathtub.” 

“We try to give back to the community,” says Operations Manager Kim Hensey. “It meant a lot to us to see how much it helps the homeowner.”