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Housing-Repair Program Aims To Keep Elderly Seniors Independent

Miami Valley Fair Housing investigated more than 70 Fannie Mae properties from 2010, 2012, and 2014.

More than a dozen elderly homeowners in Dayton’s Westwood neighborhood have been selected by the nonprofit Rebuilding Together Dayton to receive home repairs for free. The event in west Dayton, Saturday April 29, is part of a nationwide annual event made possible by about 100,000 volunteers across the country. 

Rebuilding Together Dayton’s Amy Radachi says the goal of the repair program is to help elderly homeowners remain independent, and avoid moving to expensive assisted-living facilities. She says many of the homeowners chosen for repairs are longtime, stable residents.

“There are a lot of elderly homeowners who have been in their homes an average of 30 to 40 years. They’re on a fixed income and they can’t afford to make repairs that will allow them to stay there, so we’re happy to go in and do what we can to make them safer,” she says.

Rebuilding Together Dayton last year provided free plumbing, painting, yard work, electrical and other repairs to more than more than 200 homeowners in 130 homes last year.

Elderly Westwood homeowner Dorothy Thompson was one of them. She supports her disabled daughter on a low, fixed income. Her home was in desperate need of repairs, but with little financial support, Thompson felt stuck.

She says the repairs she received from Rebuilding Together Dayton volunteers were a big help in fixing things she couldn’t afford to take care of herself.

“The young people that they selected from different schools and the like, they were so polite and so generous. They were eager, saying, ‘what do I do next,' and I appreciated all of it,” she says.  

For more information about Rebuilding Together Dayton, click here

Jess Mador comes to WYSO from Knoxville NPR-station WUOT, where she created an interactive multimedia health storytelling project called TruckBeat, one of 15 projects around the country participating in AIR's Localore: #Finding America initiative. Before TruckBeat, Jess was an independent public radio journalist based in Minneapolis. She’s also worked as a staff reporter and producer at Minnesota Public Radio in the Twin Cities, and produced audio, video and web stories for a variety of other news outlets, including NPR News, APM, and PBS television stations. She has a Master's degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in New York. She loves making documentaries and telling stories at the intersection of journalism, digital and social media.
Jerry began volunteering at WYSO in 1991 and hosting Sunday night's Alpha Rhythms in 1992. He joined the YSO staff in 2007 as Morning Edition Host, then All Things Considered. He's hosted Sunday morning's WYSO Weekend since 2008 and produced several radio dramas and specials . In 2009 Jerry received the Best Feature award from Public Radio News Directors Inc., and was named the 2023 winner of the Ohio Associated Press Media Editors Best Anchor/News Host award. His current, heart-felt projects include the occasional series Bulletin Board Diaries, which focuses on local, old-school advertisers and small business owners. He has also returned as the co-host Alpha Rhythms.
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