Homeowner Stories

National Rebuilding Month 2016 Homeowner Spotlight

Abdullah and Mehria, in their 60s, have been Beacon residents for the last 13 years. When it was found that their son Bilal, 25, had a brain tumor, surgery was necessary. During this surgery, Bilal suffered from a stroke that placed him in an induced coma for 4 months. As a result of this coma, Bilal has had his mobility and speech compromised and now relies on a wheelchair for mobility.

Their home was not handicap accessible, creating unsafe situations when entering or exiting the home and also when navigating to the second floor. For the past 6 months, Abdullah and Mehria had to carry their son and his wheelchair up multiple stairs. This had already resulted in injury for Abdullah.

This April, RTDC has been able to ease their burdens. An exterior handicap accessible stair lift has been installed on the outside of the home as well as an interior stair lift to gain access to Bilal’s bedroom and the home’s only full bath. RTDC was also able to install a free standing patient lift system within Bilal’s bedroom and full bath. This will assist in getting him from his bed to his wheelchair and also from his wheelchair into the existing bathtub.

These modifications are sure to ease both the emotional and physical stress of providing care for Bilal. Mehria confessed that since the surgery, she has not spent a day without crying. We hope that after receiving our services, her tears are only those of joy.

While we are excited to be able to make a difference in the lives of 6 homeowners, including Abdullah, Mehria and Bilal during National Rebuilding Month, there are still more applicants on our waiting list who we cannot serve because of a lack of funding. With your help, we can make an even bigger difference in the future.

To learn more about how to donate, visit us at rtdutchess.org/get-involved/donate

Become a Housing Hero today! By making a monthly pledge of $30 online you will help Rebuilding Together continue to provide safe and healthy housing for all of our neighbors in need!

National Rebuilding Day 2016 Homeowner Story

Leonard, a retired volunteer fireman and lifelong Hyde Park resident is losing his eyesight. He can no longer afford to make critical repairs to the home he has lived in for over 43 years, the home where he and his late wife raised their children.

Leonard will turn 86 this April, just before RTDC provides life-changing critical home repairs such as replacing his furnace and doors for improved energy efficiency, repairing crumbling stairs, installing grab bars, and painting the interior of the home for improved accessibility and safety.

To learn more about how to donate, visit us at rtdutchess.org/get-involved/donate

Your support celebrates our extraordinary April tradition and ensures a bright future for homeowners like Leonard and for Rebuilding Together Dutchess County!

Featured Homeowners

An elderly Wappingers Falls homeowner certainly did not have the ability or money to repair his home as necessary. Luckily, volunteers were able to preform major plumbing repairs, repair a leaky roof, install safer handrails, and drastically improve the lighting in the home so that he could be much safer in his home.  Without these repairs, this homeowner was not living in a safe and independent environment, and with the help of the volunteers on National Rebuilding Day he can now live safely for years to come. "I don't know what I would have done if I didn't get this help. All these people are like angels from heaven.”


Ms. Elizabeth lives in a home with her adult daughter and 27 year old granddaughter. Both her daughter and granddaughter are disabled. Ms. Elizabeth takes great pride in her home and simply can’t keep up with general maintenance, as a result some mold had developed in her attic as well as water damage in 2 of the bedrooms. Volunteers completed several necessary critical home repairs for Ms. Elizabeth so that she can focus on caring for her daughter and granddaughter in a safe warm, dry, and independent home environment.


A Dutchess County native, Marianne struggles with the high financial and emotional costs of her ten year battle with a life threatening disease. As a single mother of four with a limited income, she was often faced with the difficult decision between medical care and critical home repairs. Through our rebuilding Day Program, RTDC completed several critical repairs all at no cost to her including: gutter repairs, window replacements, electrical upgrades, plumbing repairs, and general weatherization. “This experience has been amazing. They were able to do things to my home that I would have never been able to do on my own.”


Anthony is a 78 year old disabled army veteran who lives in his 1940s home with his disabled son. Having served in the Army during the Korean War, Anthony has endured many life challenges with great perseverance and strength. On Fall Rebuilding Day 2015, volunteers completed several critical repairs all at no cost to Anthony including: gutter repairs, electrical upgrades, plumbing repairs, general weatherization, stair repair and the elimination of tripping hazards. The repairs on the home are focused on keeping Anthony's home safe and healthy so that he can enjoy the freedoms he fought to protect!

National Rebuilding Day 2015 Homeowner Spotlight: Patricia

Patricia is a 74 year old resident of Pleasant Valley. The pride she takes in her home is apparent as soon as you enter; she has filled the entrance hallway with photos of her children, and proudly displays the American flag she received in honor of her deceased husband’s service in the US Marine Corps. Her limited income has prevented her from being able to afford critical upkeep of her home. As a result, the roof has begun to leak, causing the elderly homeowner to constantly worry.

When she learned about RTDC, it was her last resort. “I heard about Rebuilding Together from the Office for the Aging. It was so hard to ask for help, but I was worried about losing my house,” Patricia told us. Through our Rebuilding Day Program, Patricia received a roof replacement, and volunteers also provided energy efficiency upgrades, repaired flooring that was a tripping hazard, and installed smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to ensure her health and safety for many years to come.

Homeowner Story: Mr. Annis


Robert Annis, an elderly homeowner in Amenia, after having several heart attacks and a stroke he realized he needed help with his home repairs. "It was pretty bad," said Mr. Annis about the state of his house. "The porch roof was literally leaking and this over the kitchen was pretty close... I don't think anybody realized how bad it was on the roof out there." Luckily he heard of Rebuilding Together Dutchess County from the Amenia Town Board and applied for National Rebuilding Day. Qualified and accepted, volunteers from Poughquag United Methodist Church and the community set out to repair Mr. Annis' home.

The repairs done totally changed the appearance and safety of thehome. RTDC worked with an Occupational Therapist who identified mobility issues and made recommended modifications in addition to other repairs related to the RTDC mission of warm, safe, and dry. Replacing faulty water fixtures, replacing and repairing the ceilings and walls, fixing trip hazards including interior flooring and the exterior walkway, drastically repairing the roof, as well as installing many safety features such as grab bars and handrails for Mr. Annis were just a few of the repairs performed by the RTDC team. "I was amazed at the whole process. Everybody was going all day!" said Mr. Annis. "It was a good many man-hours that went in here."

group-W800Because of the repairs and modifications performed by the RTDC team, Mr. Annis now feels safe in his home. He was not only worried about the general disrepair, but after his numerous health issues it was hard for him to navigate and use his home to the best of his ability. With grab bars and other safety features he can now live in his home independently and safely. "They've done a wonderful job really" he said, proudly wearing his Rebuilding Together Dutchess County t-shirt. "It was really something!"