“Just When You Think Doors are Closing”

July 8, 2018

It’s amazing what great teamwork can accomplish. Thanks to our recent collaboration with SAFE, a multi-generational Central Texas family is able to stay together under one roof.

SAFE, the merger of Austin Children's Shelter and SafePlace, is dedicated to ending child abuse, sexual assault, and domestic violence. SAFE’s Foster & Adopt program provides foster care and adoption services for families.  The non-profit approached us earlier this year to see if our Home Repair program could help a couple with three foster children. 

The husband and wife have asked us not to use their names – so we’ll call them Jenny and Joe.  Jenny’s mom and dad still live in the house that Jenny grew up in, the place her dad constructed himself.  “He built this entire house.  We got to see him hammer every nail, every screw, he did a great job,” Jenny says.  But these days, her dad suffers from memory loss, and Jenny’s mom is his full time caregiver.

So, Jenny and Joe came up with a plan to buy her parents’ home.  They and their three foster children, whom they’re in the process of adopting, would move into the house, and help Jenny’s mom with caregiving.  The idea was to complete an unfinished part of the house and turn that into an apartment for Jenny’s parents. “It was important to keep mom and dad close. This is what dad knows and what he’s familiar with. We didn’t think it was good for them to move to a new environment,” says Jenny.

So Jenny and Joe hired a contractor to finish out the additional rooms – but he took their money, never finished the work, and disappeared.  Now, the couple couldn’t afford to complete the apartment.  That’s when SAFE asked if our Home Repair program could provide a solution.  “Helping older Central Texans stay safe and healthy in their homes is what we do.  So, we were eager to help this multi-generational family stay together at no cost to them,” says Adam Hauser, MOWCTX’s President/CEO.   Our Home Repair program delivered a finished product and peace of mind. “We appreciate collaborating with our partner, Meals on Wheels  - it truly does take all of us to build up our families and our communities,” says Julia Spann, Co-CEO at SAFE.

Having the children under the same roof as her mom and dad is a dream come true for Jenny.  “To be able to have my parents as part of their life, I mean the kids know them as Nanna and PaPaw,” she says before adding, “just when you think doors are closing, God says ‘I’ve got this’.”