Friday, April 13, 2012

Rebuilding can be more important than building

Better Building: The Responsible Developer's Blog

Rebuilding can be more important than building.

Does the Responsible Developer volunteer to help rebuild communities?

Absolutely, and you can get involved too. It really makes a huge positive impact on the homeowners that get this kind of help. RTS (Rebuilding Together Seattle) has now made it easy to get involved with one of these amazing feel good volunteer projects.

Recently, well known South Lake Union Developer Vulcan Real Estate, teamed up with Foster Pepper and RTS, to spend some quality time making a difference in someone's life. The homeowners, Buford and Evelyn Neal, were a gracious older couple and Buford is a veteran of both WWII and the Korean War (where he lost his legs to frostbite while serving his country). Why not work hard for people like that!

So RTS set us up and gave us the ground rules. We had numerous precon meetings to define the scope of work, the materials and tools needed, what actual "contractor volunteers" would be involved and how many laborer volunteers would be needed. The hard working foursome of Margie Thirlby and Sarah Ihrie of RTS, Vulcan Project Manager extraordinaire Kyle Weeks, and Foster's own angel of organization, Joanna Plichta-Boisen, kept us all together and well prepared.

Prior to full mobilization, some of the actual contractors started on tasks like interior demo of walls and floors. Then on the day of, 30-40 Vulcan and Foster volunteers descended on the site. The weather gods were smiling as the volunteers were treated to the then warmest, sunniest day of year.

At end of long day the volunteers has transformed the home inside and out, new floors and coverings, appliances, enlarged door ways to better accommodate wheelchairs, and repairs to outbuildings, gutters, patios, walkways, landscaping and removal of lots of accumulated "stuff."

This RTS event transcended rank and title, where Vulcan Senior Directors were working side by side with Foster lawyers, staff, and their family and friends. It was a wonderful day for a wonderful cause. During the day several times curious passersby stopped wanted to know what was going on and when they found out, wanted to know how to get involved.

To cap a truly meaningful event, KOMO news reporter Theron Zahn appeared with a camera crew to interview the Neals (watch the interview) and capture the images of the many people who took time from their lives to be part of Rebuilding Together Seattle.

Get involved with RTS, you'll be glad you did. It is the responsible thing to do. See you next year.

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Foster Pepper PLLC1111 Third Avenue, Suite 3400, Seattle, WA 98101
West 422 Riverside Avenue, Suite 1310, Spokane, WA 99201
Toll-Free: (800) 995-5902

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