National Rebuilding Month highlights the importance of a safe and healthy home.
The past year has been difficult for so many people. And alongside the tragedies and challenges, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused many to reprioritize what matters most and to make their homes havens for whatever may come. But for too many of our Indianapolis neighbors, creating that safe and healthy home may be out of reach due to finances, age, or illness. Having a safe home and being allowed to age in place can be the driving factor in many end-of-life plans.
For more than 20 years, Rebuilding Together Indianapolis has been providing repairs—both small and large—in some of Indy’s most vulnerable communities. Rebuilding Together Indianapolis helps people who own their own home but, because of physical limitation or low income, are struggling to cover the costs of home repairs.
In a typical year, the Indiana Union Construction Industry, its contractors, and community stakeholders come together to do more than half a million dollars’ worth of repairs to homes during the month of April, which is also National Rebuilding Month. During a typical April, hundreds of volunteers descend upon a neighborhood to replace HVAC, rewire houses, handle plumbing issues, build and rebuild accessible bathrooms, paint, clean, add ramps, and replace windows, doors, and flooring.
In 2020, that meant reimagining what our annual build day looked like. We provided essential safety items to homeowners and performed repairs throughout the year, rather than all in one day. This year, our Union Build Day and Rebuilding Day will happen in June to provide additional time for vaccinations and preparations. Our organization has remained undaunted, because we know that these repairs are not only needed to maintain homes, but they are also essential to the health and safety of their occupants.
As we reimagine and rebuild, Rebuilding Together Indianapolis is working towards a future where everyone is able to live and age safely in their homes. For many, their home is their wealth. It is part of the American dream—a promise that if you work hard and buy a home, you’ll be able to stay there. We know that by coming together, doing significant home repairs, and reinvesting in people, we are helping to rebuild Indianapolis and that promise.
Ali Brown Executive Director Rebuilding Together Indianapolis