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Project Snapshot: Mrs. T From Bernal Heights

Jun 20, 2014
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Volunteers in Ms T's Bernal Heights homeThe Project: Ms. T moved to San Francisco from a farm in Arkansas in February 1948. At 87 years old, Ms. T says she has seen many, many changes in San Francisco during her life here. She remembers the freeway being built and the zoo. She says, “Oh, I was always born to be a city girl,” and she certainly has lived up to it owning her Bernal Heights home for over 50 years.

Ms. T recalls borrowing a hundred dollars to make a down-payment on her home in 1963. “A hundred dollars,” she exclaimed, “and it only cost me $14,500.” She notes that she’s doing all she can now to keep it.

Why We Love Her: Ms. T has many mementos from her trip to Egypt in the 1980s, and has also traveled to Washington, DC. She is an avid collector (of everything!) and stays active in her local church.

The Rebuilding Day Team: Our own AmeriCorps Program Associate Sivana Lavine led the project, with Kristin Greene from Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe serving as volunteer captain. We were impressed by how passionate our volunteers were!

The Work:

  1. Weed and prune back yard
  2. Remove unwanted items from basement and adjacent room
  3. Remove wallpaper from kitchen
  4. Paint throughout as time and volunteer turn-out affords
  5. Provide new microwave oven and toaster

 

Partners:

Orrick, Herrington, and Sutcliffe, LLP-We are flattered by your gracious sponsorship!

Kelly-Moore Paints-We used a lot of this paint on this project!

Thank you to the reliable Wilfredo Raguro for taking photos!

A big thank you as well to any volunteers who weren’t already mentioned.  Pulling off this project was a real team effort and we needed every single body that showed up that day, otherwise we wouldn’t have been able to complete our ambitious goals! Don’t forget to “like” us on Facebook!

Ms T in her backyard in Bernal Heights

Project Snapshot: Ms H from the Sunset

Jun 18, 2014
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Project Snapshot: Mrs. H from the Outer Sunset

The Project: Unlike so many others, Mrs. H is a born and raised San Franciscan. She has lived in the same house in the Outer Sunset for sixty-two years; her father purchased the house in 1952, when sand dunes regularly reached her yard and long before BART began running! Now, Mrs. H is one of two surviving members of her family; a nephew, 70 years old, visits her weekly. At 87, she is mostly homebound, relying on a live-in caretaker for her daily needs. Mrs. H cannot do any of the small but critical repairs that her home needs. Interior rooms could also use a fresh coat of paint.

Why We Love Her: Before she became homebound, Mrs. H was a 41-year employee of Chevron and a devoted volunteer at the California Academy of Sciences, where she volunteered in the marine biology division. Her face still lights up when she talks about working with the marine animals!

The Rebuilding Day Team: Longtime volunteer Paul Gray led this project, while rookie volunteer Mariko Uyeda from KKR shouldered the responsibility of supervising fifty volunteers!

Volunteers at Ms. H's Sunset homeThe Work:

  • Plumbing – repair targets include: repair or replace toilet, replace bathroom faucet, install new sink in garage, if possible, repair hot water to shower
  • Electrical – fix or install new doorbell, install GFCI outlets in kitchen, repair garage light fixture and switch, replace bedroom outlet
  • Replace gas range
  • Clear out unwanted items from garage
  • Weed and prune front and back yards
  • Provide one easy arm chair
  • Install new garage door leading to backyard
  • Patch 6” vent hole at kitchen and caulk sink
  • Paint throughout as time and volunteer turn-out afford

Partners:

Our hats are off to KKR for sponsoring this project and putting a team of employees to work for us!

Thanks to Allison Ekevara Kitpowsong for taking some scenic photographs of our volunteers hard at work!

Kelly-Moore Paints-We used a lot of this paint in almost every room of the house!

A big thank you as well to any volunteers who weren’t already mentioned.  Pulling off this project was a real team effort and we needed every single body that showed up that day, otherwise we wouldn’t have been able to complete our ambitious goals! Don’t forget to “like” us on Facebook!

Volunteers at Ms. H's Sunset home

 

 

June Volunteer of the Month: Randy Broman

Jun 16, 2014
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Randy Broman at another job well done!June’s Volunteer of the Month is Randy Broman, one of our Home Safety volunteers! We recently sat down for a quick interview.

How did you first get involved with RTSF?

I responded to an ad on Craigslist

What is your professional background and how does RTSF relate? 

Retired engineer – computer industry. Always been hands-on … I like to make things and fix things. My hobby is making furniture.

What keeps you hooked on RTSF?

I like being “out in the field” vs. desk work. The client base is obviously older, and I’ve heard some interesting life experiences. I’m a senior myself, I have two artificial hips, and I can relate to issues seniors face. RTSF staff are supportive, and friendly. I’ve been lucky in life, and I want to give back.

What is your favorite RTSF story or anecdote?

There are several, but my most interesting was a Russian woman, who had been horribly injured/disfigured in a factory explosion in Russia. Several co-workers killed, but she survived and demonstrated for better factory safety conditions. For this she was threatened with imprisonment, and forced to leave Russia and emigrate to the US. Here she learned English and worked in nursing homes. She ultimately married one of the residents, who is partially disabled, and they now live in public housing in Chinatown. Despite all this, she has a positive attitude, and she’s intelligent and interesting to talk to.

Any parting words you’d like to share with the RTSF world?

I believe volunteering is useful, interesting and fun!

 

Project Snapshot: Mr. M from the Excelsior

Jun 16, 2014
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The Project: While Mr. M is a very responsible and clean homeowner, his walls, fixtures, and appliances are showing normal signs of wear and tear. He has been in his Excelsior home for thirty two years, and our repairs could be why he can stay there for many years to come. Mr. M is very gracious, and we look forward to serving him.

Why We Love Him: Mr. M has Peruvian artwork hanging in his home, which is a testament to the country he left many decades ago.

The Rebuilding Day Team: RTSF legend Mark Rosen led this project, while Cloudera’s own Lori Brent drummed up thirty volunteers!

 Volunteers at Mr. M's Excelsior homeThe Work:

  • Repair and prep walls/wallpaper for paint
  • Replace light fixtures in kitchen, hallway, dining room, front bedrooms
  • Install wireless door chime
  • Install smoke/CO detectors
  • Repair wiring for kitchen light, hallway lights, dining room light, bedroom lights
  • Run wiring/add receptacle to back bedroom, repair back-to-back receptacle
  • Add repair rear backyard light
  • Extend circuit and install new receptacle for refrigerator
  • Remove/replace uneven sheetrock in dining room ceiling

Partners

Cloudera-Thank you for sponsoring this Rebuilding Day project! We love your leadership.

Kelly-Moore Paints-We used a lot of this paint in almost every room of the house!

We want to give some Rebuilding recognition to Geoff Hornek, who took photos of the site. They look awesome!

A big thank you as well to any volunteers who weren’t already mentioned. We often work in the Excelsior neighborhood.  Pulling off this project was a real team effort and we needed every single body that showed up that day, otherwise we wouldn’t have been able to complete our ambitious goals! Don’t forget to “like” us on Facebook!

Volunteers gathered in the Excelsior community for National Rebuilding Day 2014!

Project Snapshot: Ms G from the Bayview

Jun 13, 2014
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The SF Brewers Guild worked on Ms. G's Bayview home The Project: Mrs. G has lived in her Bayview home for over thirty years, and she has put the same amount of work and pride into the house. It’s the house where she raised two daughters and lived with her husband, a Navy veteran, until he passed away several years ago. The repairs needed are a result of normal wear and tear, and had to be completed in order for Mrs. G to safely age in place.

Why We Love Her: Mrs. G now graciously shares her home with one of her daughters, who runs a nonprofit after-school program in the Bayview, which sorely needs it. We love people working in SF nonprofits!

The Rebuilding Day Team: Pat Loughran, an RTSF volunteer for over a decade, led the project, with Egan Hill, one of RTSF’s hardworking board members, providing backup as a co-lead. Brian Stechschulte from the San Francisco Brewer’s Guild rallied over thirty volunteers to get the work done!

 

The Work:

  • Replace sink bullnose
  • Demo platform at bathtub and reinstall existing tub
  • Install shower rod and curtain
  • Fix leaking skylight
  • Install new wall unit cabinets 5′ long
  • Replace bedroom door and install new handles in bed and closet doors
  • Source and replace vinyl floor in kitchen
  • Paint garage door
  • Paint two bedrooms
  • Clear weeds in backyard

 

The SF Brewers Guild worked on Ms. G's Bayview homePartners:

The San Francisco Brewer’s Guild sponsored this Bayview project. Thank you!

The talented Jeff Spirer took photos of the event. Check out his work here.

Kelly-Moore Paints-We used a lot of this paint in the bedrooms and on the garage door!

A big thank you as well to any volunteers who weren’t already mentioned.  Pulling off this project was a real team effort and we needed every single body that showed up that day, otherwise we wouldn’t have been able to complete our ambitious goals! Don’t forget to “like” us on Facebook!

Project Snapshot: Ms. F From the Excelsior

Jun 12, 2014
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Volunteers warming up to tackle Ms. F's Excelsior home Project Snapshot: Ms. F from the Excelsior

The Project: Even though Mrs. F is 93, her energy levels are off the charts! Born in Oklahoma, she moved to San Francisco in the midst of WWII, where she worked as an ammunition driver Mrs. F has owned her Excelsior home for 44 years and it currently houses three of her children and a grandchild, including an adult daughter with a disability.

Mrs. F says she “can’t even begin to describe” how much it would mean to her to have volunteers come spruce up her home. “Oh, I’d be so grateful. I just need help getting it up to shape and then I can keep it together from there,” she says proudly.

Why We Love Her: Mrs. F has a long history of working for her community, both in the Excelsior and in other San Francisco neighborhoods. After the war, she was a founding volunteer for the Economic Opportunity Council, working so hard, she says, that they “just had to” offer her a job. She worked for years to set up community groups all over San Francisco, in Chinatown, the Mission, and Bayview Hunter’s Point. Once a pioneering community and social advocate, Mrs. F. has since retired, and instead focuses her efforts on maintaining “the most beautiful yard you’ve ever seen.” It’s an Excelsior landmark!

The Rebuilding Day Team: The always-friendly Mike Dunn put his experience with Rebuilding Together’s National office to work in order to complete this project. Josh Graber from St. James provided support as a co-lead. Grant Paul, Roger Wickstrom, and David Sullivan from St. Mary’s ran the volunteer effort for the day.

The Work:

  • Install smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors
  • Rehang closet doors
  • Repair exterior and interior handrails
  • Install grab bars and hand-held shower head in bathrooms
  • Paint throughout as time and volunteer turnout affords
  • Remove unwanted items and organize as needed/requested throughout

Volunteers warming up to tackle Ms. F's Excelsior homePartners:

Thanks to both St. Mary’s and St. James’ Episcopal churches for sponsoring the project together and combining their congregations to develop a robust volunteer team!

We are glad that Geoff Hornek was able to take photos and document all the great work our volunteers did!

Kelly-Moore Paints-We used a lot of this paint in almost every room of the house!

A big thank you as well to any volunteers who weren’t already mentioned.  Pulling off this project was a real team effort and we needed every single body that showed up to the Excelsior that day, otherwise we wouldn’t have been able to complete our ambitious goals! Don’t forget to “like” us on Facebook!

Project Snapshot: Mr. D From the Ingleside

Jun 11, 2014
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Volunteers at Mr. D's house in the Ingleside. Project Snapshot: Mr. D from Ingleside

The Project: Mr. D came to the US from Nigeria to attend school in Oklahoma. Four years later, he moved to San Francisco and gradually brought over his mother and all four siblings. Right now, Mr. D lives with his wife and five children as well as his mother, brother, and sister in the Ingleside neighborhood, where he’s lived for thirteen years.

Why we love them: Mr. Duru loves to dance, and thinks education and community service are two of the most important aspects of life. He especially enjoys volunteering at a local food bank, and RTSF loves to help people who give back.

The Rebuilding Day Team: Our own Rachel Fontenot served as project lead, providing able leadership as well as a can-do attitude. Melanie Hopson, Harly Crandall, and Chris King from Home For a Home collaborated on coordinating the project’s volunteers.

The Work:

  • Install a dishwasher
  • Assemble and install new blinds
  • Assemble and install new shelving units
  • Install a shoe rack
  • Re-install trim as needed
  • Paint in all rooms
  • Clean clutter and install garage lighting
  • Patch sheetrock where needed
  • Repair waste line leaks

Partners: Home For A Home-Thank you for your volunteers and your enthusiasm!Taking a break during a busy day of volunteering at Mr. D's Ingleside home.

Kelly-Moore Paints-We used a lot of this paint in almost every room of the house!

Thank you to our own Rachel Fontenot for taking photos of the project  AND being the project lead!

A big thank you as well to any volunteers who weren’t already mentioned.  Pulling off this project was a real team effort and we needed every single body that showed up that day, otherwise we wouldn’t have been able to complete our ambitious goals! Don’t forget to “like” us on Facebook!

Project Snapshot: Wu Yee Children’s Services

Jun 10, 2014
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Project Snapshot: Wu Yee Children’s Services

The Project: Wu Yee operates many child development centers and family resource centers in San Francisco after starting in 1977 by serving recent immigrant families in Chinatown. “Wu Yee” means “protector of children” in Cantonese, and Wu Yee uses their diverse network of centers to offer a whole host of early education- and family-oriented services. With centers in Chinatown, Visitacion Valley, the Tenderloin, and the Bayview, Wu Yee continues to serve nearly four thousand clients each year, many of them low-income, recent immigrants, or language learners. RTSF assembled a volunteer team to work on Wu Yee’s New Generation center at 700 Velasco, in San Francisco’s Visitacion Valley neighborhood.

Volunteers at Wu Yee for Rebuilding Day!Why We Love Them: We were surprised how Wu Yee’s organization uses their different centers to offer a comprehensive range of services, including caregiver training, kindergarten preparation for school-age children, and services in English, Cantonese, and Spanish. Their project needs also seemed beginner-friendly, making this project a natural fit for first-time volunteers!

How They Found Us: Mike Neumann, one of Wu Yee’s executive staff, has worked on projects with RTSF before. When our next Rebuilding Day drew near, he knew exactly where to go!

The Rebuilding Day Team: Genevieve Cadwalader with the Belden Club (and a board member!) provided guidance as a project lead, while Ryan Morita had a great time as a volunteer captain.

The Work:

  • Prep and paint exterior walls, trim, doors and awnings of main building and outbuilding sheds
  • Includes wall underneath railing but excludes all railings and fencing.  Also excludes side of shed made unreachable by chain link fence.

Partners:

The Belden Club-thank you for your sponsorship!

Kelly-Moore Paints-We used a lot of this paint in almost every room and hallway!

We’re grateful to returning volunteer Karen Chin for taking photographs for us!

A big thank you as well to any volunteers who weren’t already mentioned.  Pulling off this project was a real team effort and we needed every single body that showed up that day, otherwise we wouldn’t have been able to complete our ambitious goals! Don’t forget to “like” us on Facebook! Wu Yee's project was sponsored by the Belden Club

Project Snapshot: Visitacion Valley Middle School

Jun 9, 2014
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The Project: Visitacion Valley Middle School’s mission is to provide a quality education that prepares students for a fulfilling life in a global society. They  provide a fair opportunity for all students to learn and the educational resources for students to be successful. The school, rich in ethnicity and culture, is known nationally for its innovative programs.Students and volunteers at Visitacion Valley Middle School

Teachers and students are assigned to academic families that use a variety of innovative technology, cross-curricular writing programs, and project-based and standards-based instruction throughout the year

Why We Love Them: Parent involvement equals student success, and Visitacion Valley Middle School knows that. They publish a monthly newsletter to keep parents informed, hold workshops, and have lots of ways parents can get involved!

How They Found Us: Visitacion Valley Middle School staff were referred to us by someone with the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission. We’re glad that people think of us when they learn about a potential project!

The Rebuilding Day Team: Mike Heublein and Pat Revetta, both prior project leads, oversaw the entire project. We couldn’t have done it without their leadership and expertise! Shari Samuels served as a volunteer captain alongside RTSF board member Rich Schimbor. Thanks everyone!

The Work:

Outdoor Garden:

  • Storage container- repaint exterior, add hooks to interior, cut ventilation holes in storage container, isntall eave-vent grill, install new raised redwood planter bed along edge of storage container, install redwood trellis to external wall of storage container
  • Install new mulch pathway
  • Construct and install (4) new planter boxes
  • Weed and remove existing organic debris from planting areas

Second Floor Interior:

  • Classroom 201- remove exsiting operable partition
  • Office 217A – Repaint room
  • Office 217- Repaint room, add new bookcases, add shades to interior-facing windows at small offices surrounding office 217/detention room

Third Floor Interior:

  • Classroom 207 (Art Room) – repaint room, install 4′ X 5′ table tops at existing partitions, add new stools
  • Classrooms 18/20 – Remove existing operable partition
  • Classrooms 21/22- Remove existing operable partition
  • Courtyard- Repaint existing metal planters

 

Partners:

US Bank-We couldn’t do it without your sponsorship!

Kelly-Moore Paints-We used a lot of this paint in the classrooms and the storage container!

We’re grateful to Huy Wee for taking photographs for us!

A big thank you as well to any volunteers who weren’t already mentioned.  Pulling off this project was a real team effort and we needed every single body that showed up that day, otherwise we wouldn’t have been able to complete our ambitious goals! Don’t forget to “like” us on Facebook! Visitacion Valley Middle School volunteers. Look at that mural!

Project Snapshot: Mission Beacon

Jun 4, 2014
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 Volunteers at the Mission BeaconProject Snapshot: Mission Beacon

The Project: Beacon centers all over San Francisco transform public schools into community and youth centers. The Mission Beacon Center, at Everett Middle School, prepares youth mentally, physically and spiritually, nurturing young minds with education, support, guidance, and advocacy. They promote social awareness, community engagement, and cultural enrichment. They work with community partners to improve communities and empower citizens to become community leaders.

Why We Love Them: We love the sheer number of classes, services, and opportunities available at the Mission Beacon. For example, youth can participate in theatre for social justice, take urban art and murals classes, or learn how to walk on stilts!

How They Found Us: Staff at the Mission Beacon had heard of RTSF through our work on other youth centers in San Francisco.

The Rebuilding Day Team: Cathy Dompe, Tyler Weeks, and Kathy Guerin, from Leadership San Francisco, excelled at leading a large-scale project. Danl Plyler from Sephora and Britt Wenzler from MacFarlane Partners worked together to coordinate over fifty volunteers in five rooms. What a huge, skilled group!

The Work:

Main Room

  • Paint walls below wainscot trim
  • Install freestanding workstations for staff
  • Reorganize existing storage
  • Repurpose storage racks and bins in art or other areas

Game Room

  • Paint walls
  • Organize storage
  • Provide new seating

Courtyard

  • Paint east wall
  • Paint benches

Cafeteria

  • Paint lower portion of walls and columns up to trim

Storage Closet

  • Paint walls
  • Remove unwanted items
  • Rearrange storage racks

 

Young volunteers at the Mission BeaconPartners:

MacFarlane Partners, Sephora USA, and Leadership San Francisco-We are flattered and awed that you teamed up to sponsor this project!

Kelly-Moore Paints-We used a lot of this paint in every room we worked on!

We’re grateful to Michael Sevy for taking photographs for us!

A big thank you as well to any volunteers who weren’t already mentioned.  Pulling off this project was a real team effort and we needed every single body that showed up that day, otherwise we wouldn’t have been able to complete our ambitious goals! Don’t forget to “like” us on Facebook!

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