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North Texas Nonprofit Asks for Help with Senior Home Repairs


A toolbelt. | Image by Blue Diamond Photography on Flickr

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A Fort Worth nonprofit is asking for volunteers to help with minor home repairs for senior citizens in Tarrant County.

The Northside Inter-Community Agency (NICA), which recently received a $20,000 grant to buy materials for the project, has asked North Texans to volunteer their time to help accomplish the home improvements.

The NICA interim executive director, Connie Nahoolewa, told NBC that the work needed will be relatively basic.

“It’s not like they need a great deal of skills,” she said. “It could be a handyman or handywoman. And it wouldn’t take very long. A lot of times, it just takes a couple of hours or sometimes a whole day, but most of the projects are minor.”

Repairs have already been finished on around twenty homes, but there are many left that still need work.

“We had a little lady who had a butter knife she was using to keep her door shut because her lock wasn’t working,” Nahoolewa said. “The one gentleman we have who needs his home painted is unable to get home insurance because he has to have the painting done first. And he’s legally blind.”

The average monthly income for these senior citizens is about $950, according to Nahoolewa.

She added that this limited income “doesn’t really allow for hiring someone to come in and make repairs.”

According to NBC, the organization’s goal is to allow Tarrant County senior citizens to remain independent and in their homes for as long as possible.

NICA was established in 1969 to provide programs, services, food, and clothing to families on the north side of Fort Worth. The agency is the largest provider of social services needs in the area.

In 2011, the nonprofit distributed $1.5 million in donations of food and clothing to around 43,000 people; 20,900 of whom were children.

According to the NICA website, the organization provides a “hand-up” to families in need, working with them to achieve long-term goals via crisis counseling, education, community, and case management services.

“Our aim is to aid and empower, to provide or link people to opportunities to get back on their feet, to strengthen their families, and ultimately to strengthen their neighborhoods,” the website states.

One of NICA’s services, the “Good Works Program,” was established to provide supplemental assistance for senior citizens and disabled people, addressing hunger in these communities.

In addition to the nonprofit’s programs and fundraising efforts, it also provides free computer classes three times per week for both English and Spanish speakers. These classes are held each week on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

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