SECOND STEP LINKS VOLUNTEER IN RECOVERY

§ February 3rd, 2011 § Filed under Volunteers § Tagged , , , , , , § No Comments

Want to brighten someone’s day? All you have to do is ask!

Are you ever just going about your day, business as usual, then a phone call or a visitor or a piece of mail presents itself, and it just completely brightens that otherwise typical day?

That happened to me last month when, out of the blue, I got a phone call from a man named, Mike Childers.

Now, I have to say that most of the calls I get in my position as Asset Manager are from clients who are having trouble finding enough money to pay their rent or from maintenance staff, just letting me know that a sewer pipe (or something equally important) has burst. Satisfying calls to help with, for sure, but not exactly stress-free.

So when Mike called me, I wasn’t sure what he wanted and whether there was a crisis involved.

But as it would turn out, he is a local man in recovery who had lived in substance-free group housing in the past, so was a bit familiar with what Second Step Housing does.

Mike had since moved out, and started his own business. It’s called Rain or Shine Carpet Cleaning in Vancouver, WA, and all he wanted was to clean some carpet for us. Once a month- For Free- asking nothing in return.

After checking out his credentials, all I could do was smile and say, “YES!”

One of the major issues we have in our properties is flooring, because with the number of people who move through our houses – with little children, no less – our floors take a beating. It’s not that residents are care-less, it is strictly a volume issue. And because Second Step provides affordable housing, our options are limited because we don’t have the money to invest in top-of-the line materials. Therefore, maintaining what we have is critical.

Mike probably didn’t know that when he called with his generous offer, he was really offering to help Second Step sustain its life, not just to clean some carpet.

After he cleaned the first unit I presented to him – a unit in which we were considering replacing the carpet because it was in such bad shape – our cleaning staff called in to ask whether we had replaced the carpet. You can’t ask for a better review than that.

A big thank you to Mike, who through his generosity not only brightened my day, but brightens the lives of each of the women and children who live in the homes he cleans. More often than not, they cry when they move in. Happy tears that they get to live in such a beautiful, clean, safe home.

And thank you to all of Second Step’s wonderful volunteers. We couldn’t do it without you!

Mike Childers of Rain or Shine Carpet Cleaning can be reached at 503-453-3989.

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