First Farmers and Merchants Bank and Habitat for Humanity Williamson-Maury (HFHWM) have joined forces this month to bring warmth and safety to a local senior citizen in need.
Mrs. Augusta Walker was born in Columbia, TN and worked in the area as a caregiver for others for over 20 years. She and her husband bought their ranch home in 2006, planning to spend their golden years there together. Unfortunately, Mr. Walker passed away just two years later. Ms. Walker suffered a stroke in October 2019, which incapacitated her greatly, making her home her safe-haven.
“After just moments of arriving to Mrs. Walker’s residence, it was clear she needed a lot of functional repairs and quickly,” explains HFHWM Critical Repair Manager Scott Barker. “Her roof was leaking directly into four rooms of her home, producing mold, rotting panels, and forming calcium deposits. We also noticed that the intruding water had damaged her HVAC system, rusting it out and causing it to work intermittently. The electrical issues we found were also very serious. Her outlets were nonfunctional, forcing her to run extension cords to other rooms, and her light switches crackled and smell of smoke when flipped.”
On a fixed-income, Mrs. Walker had put off the repairs, saving her income for life’s immediate necessities.
“I had wanted to fix my roof for so long, but I couldn’t find the money to do it,” Walker noted. “I also wanted someone I could trust to do the job right. I was so thankful to find this program. God has blessed me.”
Habitat Williamson-Maury (HFHWM) offers the Critical Home Repair Program to perform major, necessary home repairs at discounted rates for qualifying, low-income homeowners. The program’s goals are to keep those in need safe, warm, and able to age in place in their own homes. While Habitat brings the expertise and tools to complete the projects, community partnerships fund the repairs for those in need.
“Many local families are struggling financially right now and can’t make necessary repairs like fixing their leaking roof, replacing their broken HVAC system, or installing safety measures like grab bars or wheelchair ramps,” explains HFHWM CDO Kim Randell. “First Farmers and Merchants Bank has been a long-time partner of ours. When we brought Ms. Walker’s repair needs to them, they so graciously came on board to make it happen.”
“Our Bank has been proud to support Habitat home builds for the past six years,” noted Brian K. Williams, President of First Farmers and Merchants Bank. “With the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic prohibiting opportunities for our Bank team to volunteer on home builds in 2020, we wanted to continue to find ways to support Habitat’s mission. We were excited for the opportunity to support the critical repair program and give back to our local community by making repairs at Mrs. Walker’s home.”
HFHWM has a list of local, qualifying families who are in dire need of assistance. To sponsor a repair and help a neighbor in need, please contact HFHWM at 615-690-8090 or visit www.hfhwm.org.