San Jose Water has been supporting Rebuilding Together’s efforts to provide home repairs and safety upgrades to Santa Clara County residents for over 20 years. Over that time we’ve supported the home improvements necessary to improve accessibility for seniors and individuals with disabilities and given safe, upgraded homes to low-income homeowners in partnership with the non-profit organization.
Every year, Rebuilding Together helps communities in need through the unification of their national network of local Rebuilding Together affiliates, corporate and individual donors, skilled trades individuals and associations and almost 100,000 volunteers each year.
Sidonia, a sweet 86-old homeowner has been living in her home for 21 years. She grew up with a disability in her left leg, causing limited mobility and the need to use a walker. Sidonia is retired from Lockheed and living with her adult son, who works as a home health care aide. She is also the primary caregiver of one of her grandsons, whose mother struggles with drug addiction. Sidonia’s husband, a former gardener at Golden Gate Park and Air Force veteran, passed away in 2001.
Though her plate is full, she is motivated by a lesson her father impressed upon her to try to remain independent through any difficulties or challenges life brings into her path.
Sidonia’s touching story and everlasting positivity and perseverance made an impact on the Rebuilding Together team. On April 28, 2018, San Jose Water collaborated with the non-profit to remodel parts of Sidonia’s house for an easier living experience. The renovation completed includes painting interior rooms (living room, kitchen, and hallway), repairing or replacing interior doors, replacing the electric range and dishwasher, repairing or replacing kitchen cabinet doors, and replacing the refrigerator and microwave.
San Jose Water supports the organization as a project sponsor, donating $10,000 each year to support the Rebuilding Together’s work in the community. SJW employees also volunteer their time to help complete the home repair work. In addition, two SJW employees, Dee Leal, Executive, Special Projects, and Aaron Scott, Distribution Systems Supervisor, serve on the organization’s Board of Directors. Jennifer Bohdanowicz, Starlette Gallegos, Nemesis Schortgen, Darrin Woods, Rose Rebugio, Tony Jimenez, Ed Heldebran, and Kristen Heldebrandt are also proud volunteers.