Rebuild Upstate celebrates record

UPSTATE — The lives of 120 Upstate families were made better in 2015 thanks to the volunteers at Rebuild Upstate.

This nonprofit that serves Pickens, Greenville, Anderson and Oconee counties more than doubled its number of homes repaired from its previous record of 62 in 2013, said Chris Manley, the nonprofit’s founder and executive director.

In 2015, 120 homes were repaired and improved throughout the four-county area through the work of 900 volunteers, who performed more than 15,000 hours of service. Rebuild Upstate’s community impact was more than $562,000.

Completed projects included 50 large handicap accessible ramps (20 feet or longer), 19 small handicap ramps (smaller than 20 feet in length), six wedge ramps for aided accessibility, four roof repairs, 13 roof replacements, 12 shingle replacements and three metal roof installations, three HVAC replacements or repairs, 20 flooring repairs or replacements, two electrical repairs, 14 plumbing repairs, 15 grab bar installations (for safety purposes) and 36 assorted other projects.

Rebuild Upstate helps low-income homeowners with home repairs and accessibility improvements to create safe, livable housing in existing homes and neighborhoods. Typically, homeowners fall into one of three segments: low-income families with children in the home, seniors age 60 and older and people with disabilities.

Rebuild Upstate uses a diverse funding model comprised of individuals, corporations, foundations, local churches and small businesses that support the organization, Manley said.

“This year is a testament to the awesome ability of people to come together as a group to help and aid others across the Upstate,” Manley said.