Volunteers Get Homeowners Winter Ready

Saturday, October 25th 2008, 6:18 pm
By: News On 6

By Dan Bewley, News On 6

TULSA, OK - Getting your home ready for winter can be a big job and cost a lot of money, especially for the elderly and low-income. But thanks to some generous folks, that job was taken care of for dozens of north Tulsa residents on Saturday.

With the state of the economy, the help couldn't have come at a better time.

Rebuilding Together Tulsa, a non-profit group and a bunch of volunteers spent the morning in a north Tulsa neighborhood with caulk guns and energy efficient light bulbs in hand.

"We're also weather stripping doors and windows, closing up any gaps that we see," said Jennifer Barcus-Schafer with Rebuilding Together Tulsa.

Organized by Rebuilding Together Tulsa and sponsored by PSO, all of the repairs are free. The homeowner pays nothing.

"It's a blessing," said Tulsa Resident, Donald Armstead.

"I wouldn't have been able or had the strength to do it myself. So, I appreciate it very, very much," said Tulsa Resident, Australia Hopson.

Australia Hopson is 94-years-old and says the volunteers are a lifesaver, adding it's hard to keep her home warm in the winter.

"Oh Lord yes, the door is terrible. Air shoots in and around it and they are going to fix that," said Hopson.

"All of these are simple, little repairs," said Barcus-Schafer.

Several of the projects were to repair damage that was done during last December's ice storm.

Jennifer Barcus-Schafer is the brains behind the program. It's aimed at helping homeowners in Tulsa city limits who are 60 or older or living with a disability.

All of the materials and elbow-grease were donated. The volunteers say it's well worth it.

"Just giving a few hours of your time to help your neighbor, it's an amazing feeling because it lasts them a long time, that good feeling, that they saw their neighbors supporting them," said Barcus-Schafer.

The homeowners agree, saying the bills in winter pile up and all of these repairs should make a big difference.

"I hope so. I really hope so because it's something that I have to pay and I don't see with my income how I can keep up with it," said Hopson.

Click here to learn more about the program.