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Apr 17, 2010 6:42 PM by Melissa Hawkes

Rebuilding Together Acadiana

he Nonprofit, Rebuilding Acadiana Together, is hoping to rebuild Lafayette one home at a time. Volunteers spent their day at 731 Arthur St. in Lafayette repairing an ageing home.

Jodee Ware, the executive director of Rebuilding Acadiana Together, said the homeowner

"was saying that no one ever comes and helps her so she was glad to have the assistance."

Volunteers say the owner of the home they worked on this weekend is elderly and can no longer give the house the attention it needs, so that’s where they step in. They make sure each home is safe by repairing roofs, windows and floors.

Keren Cowen, a volunteer, said "There comes a time in your life, when maybe you can't climb a ladder or do house repairs, so that's what we are here for."

Volunteers don't just focus on house repairs; they aim to make the house more accessible for homeowners, doing things like widening door ways and installing wheelchair ramps.

Ware said, "If our ageing population can stay in their homes and live out the rest of their lives without having to go into assisted living or nursing homes, it's better for them and for the community."

Keren Cowen has been a real estate agent for 32 years and realizes the importance of preserving homes in the community.

Cowen says the elderly homeowners need help "because they can't take care of it anymore, so we are here to pick up the slack, and make sure that they can stay safe and warm and dry."

She said the most rewarding part of volunteering comes at the end of the day.

"It's so good to see how much they appreciate what we do for them and they do," Cowen said.

For more information on the program call 291 9910.

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