From Christmas in April Omaha to Project Houseworks, the nonprofit organization dedicated to keeping local seniors in their homes has undergone several name changes through the years but never wavered from its mission.
Project Houseworks began in 1996 under the name Christmas in April Omaha. At its start, community members came together one day out of the year to make repairs to the homes of local seniors, said Lynette Farhart, executive director of Project Houseworks.
“They were getting so many applications for this one-day event, but they were only able to take so many of them based on how many teams they could get,” Farhart said. “They decided to start raising money in order to help serve the other homeowners who had applied but had not been selected.”
Corporate support and donations enabled Christmas in April Omaha to grow from more than a one-day event into the nonprofit organization now called Project Houseworks.
Project Houseworks provides qualifying senior homeowners with home repairs and safety modifications, such as adding a grab bar in the bathroom of a senior’s home or changing a homeowner’s tub to a shower.
“We also relocate their laundry machines to the main floor,” Farhart said. “I know those things are really life changing for the seniors we serve. It’s something that allows them to live with independence and peace of mind.”
Project Houseworks’ overarching goal is to repair and modify seniors’ homes so they can stay in them longer.
“Seniors really do want to stay in their homes,” Farhart said. “It’s where they feel comfortable, and it’s where they’re going to thrive.”
Continued support from the community and businesses, such as Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska (BCBSNE), which recently awarded a grant to Project Houseworks, supports the program and the seniors it serves.
To see the impact Project Houseworks has on seniors in the community, check out this video of local senior Virginia Torres, a Project Houseworks recipient.
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