NEIGHBORHOOD REVITALIZATION: INSPIRING A FAMILY
By: Melissa Adler, Community Outreach Development Associate, HFHS
The house had a leaky roof and peeling paint. “It was not a pretty house,” says Jennifer. It was also too small for the family of five. Siblings, a girl and boy, shared a bedroom. The baby, now 18 months, slept in mom and dad’s room. The roof repair was just the beginning of improvements.
Jennifer initially got help through the City of Springfield and Habitat for Humanity of Springfield to replace the roof. Additional improvements were made through our Critical Home Repair program. Jennifer lives in Woodland Heights, our Neighborhood Revitalization partner, with her husband John and their three children.
“This is very emotional for me,” says Jennifer. “It has made such a huge difference for my family.”
Habitat for Humanity, with the help of many volunteers, added a bedroom for the boy. They moved the front door and built a new porch. They painted the exterior green and gray. Jennifer says the combination was the vision of her husband John. “I wish he could see this,” she said the day the color went on. “He’s working a lot of overtime right now.”
Jennifer’s daughter loves the house so much she never wants to move. Volunteers made an impression on the tween, particularly the young people with Bike & Build. Watching volunteers has inspired her to become a teacher and volunteer when she gets older.
Working with Habitat was “a pretty awesome experience,” says Jennifer.
Jennifer hopes her house inspires others on her street to make improvements. She’s committed to her neighborhood and wants to make it better. “I would like to know more neighbors,” she said. “Maybe there are elderly people who need help.”
The investment Jennifer and John made in their house creates a healthy environment and stability for their children. It keeps a family in their own home, which is also good for Woodland Heights.
Jennifer will accept an award on March 9 from the North Springfield Betterment Association for home improvements.
For more information about Habitat for Humanity of Springfield, MO’s partnership with Woodland Heights and Neighborhood Revitalization, contact Melissa Adler at 417-829-4001 x 116.