Talk is one thing, actually doing it is a completely different animal. All year at the office we talk about National Rebuilding Day. Most of the work that we do on a day to day basis, vetting applications, inspecting homes for potential projects, even the social media posts we make, point towards Rebuilding Day. While it is not our singular goal, it is the most important event that we have in the year. I had never experienced a Rebuilding Day before this year, and to be able to witness it was something special that I will not soon forget.
Overall, we, and this includes our staff, board, and each and every one of our amazing volunteers, worked on 15 homes across Southeast Michigan. This year included the first every Rebuilding Day project in Detroit for RTSEM, a huge milestone that harkens on things to come for this organization. There were projects in Farmington Hills, Highland Township, Milford, Pontiac, Southfield, and Waterford. Volunteers were all over the place, all in all, close to 400 folks showed up to help out a neighbor in need.
My day started off tying up some loose ends, dropping off signs and shirts at a few different projects around Farmington Hills. I arrived at these homes before 7:30, and already there were volunteers eager to get to work. That was the first sign of what kind of day it was going to be. When I got to the project I was attending kickoff at in Southfield, there were already twenty volunteers ready to start the day’s work. All of the volunteers were eager to get going, and while I did not stick around for the entire day, when I spoke with the homeowner after the fact she had nothing but glowing praises for the volunteer team.
Those are the types of people that comprise our volunteers, and that is the type of experience we want our homeowners to have. At every single home that I visited on Rebuilding Day, I met so many smiling, generous, kind volunteers, and at each home, there was a happy homeowner eager to share just how grateful they were for the work being done on their home. The whole day was a bright ray of sunshine in a world that can often be cloudy. I would like to thank all of our house captains, sponsors, and volunteers for an unforgettable experience for me, and a life-changing one for the homeowners we served.