Since moving into their facility in November 2011, the volunteers and staff of The Green Chair Project have been providing home furnishings donated by the community to families and individuals who are transitioning from homelessness or disasters into secured sustainable housing. The donations they receive — everything from sofas and bedroom sets to dish ware and home accessories — are carefully cleaned and repaired by volunteers so that they may be presented with dignity and respect to these families. At times, there can be as many as 30-40 volunteers working at The Green Chair Project on a particular day.
There was one problem. With only one sink available inside the entire 36,000 square foot facility, that one sink had to be used to make coffee, fill mop buckets, and clean and prep donated furniture and accessories.
Enter the Remodelers Council of Wake County. As the 2014 community service chair for the Remodelers Council and President of Paragon Building Group, Joshua Mauney heard about The Green Chair Project’s challenges and brought the idea to the rest of the council during a planning session last January.
The council, part of the Home Builders Association of Raleigh-Wake County, voted to adopt The Green
Chair Project as its 2014 Annual Charity Renovation. The work transformed one sink into two new kitchens, two bathrooms, and even added some new curb appeal for the building.
“As a result of the newly renovated work space, restrooms and kitchen, The Green Chair Project will be able to have a greater impact in serving our community for a long time to come,” said Jackie Craig, executive director and co-founder, The Green Chair Project. “We will be more efficient in processing our donations and better able to accommodate our guests and volunteers because of such a wonderful gift!”
The renovation efforts were designed to improve the volunteer work areas so they can continue to grow and serve people with greater efficiency.
“These volunteers have played a vital role in shaping this facility into a successful non-profit operation,” said Craig. The charity renovation, valued at $133,700, took place for two weeks during October.
Kitchen and volunteer break-room renovations
A one sink break room was transformed into a two sink/two dishwasher washing station with ample counter space for processing and cleaning kitchen items and other hand washable items.
The volunteer break-room was relocated and will function as a kitchen complete with a sink, dishwasher, stove, microwave and refrigerator. (Green Chair has never had a fully-equipped kitchen with a stove and oven — so this is a significant improvement that will allow Green Chair to be able to prepare/heat food for volunteers and staff; fundraising events, such as preview parties, their annual gala and volunteer appreciation events.)
A doorway was added to allow passage from the kitchen directly to the washing center. Ample cabinet space was expanded to create more storage for the currently-overflowing dish department. A refrigerator with an ice and water dispenser was added to provide volunteers, staff and guests with filtered drinking water.
A large island extension in the kitchen was added to provide ample space to gather for meetings
The break-room was connected to the restroom hallway via a “butler’s pantry” that now has a bank of cabinets and a long countertop to use for additional storage.
There was also room for a table and chairs to accommodate up to 12-15 people.
Two bathrooms were updated to include new pedestal sinks, paint and tile floors. Both restrooms
were modified to be handicap accessible. The bathrooms closest to the kitchen were outfitted
to accommodate a future stackable washer/dryer.
Tile flooring was installed throughout the washing station, two adjacent bathrooms, and hallways
up to the warehouse entrance. A team from Lowes Home Improvement power-washed the entire
building, cleaned up the surrounding grounds, and added mulch and flowers to the front and sides of the building.
Craig added, “All of these changes will make our facility a better space in which to help families
transitioning from homelessness and disasters.”
“From design and construction, to providing donations and project management, this was a huge
undertaking” said Mauney. “We look forward to hearing about the successful ongoing efforts of The Green Chair Project as they continue to provide a wonderful service to our community.”
PROJECT DONORS, VENDORS, VOLUNTEERS
A Touch Of Tile
ABC Building Supply
Bizzy Bee Plumbing
Bob Fortner Photography
Carolina Custom Kitchen And Bath
City Electric Supply
David Pruitt Electrical
Elite Waste Services
Kitchen And Bath
Louis Heating And
Paragon Building Group
Phoenix Stone Solutions
Professional Building Supply
Robert Witcraft Painting
Sparkle And Shine Cleaning
Stock Building Supply
Traditions In Tile
William Tile And Design
The 2014 Remodelers Community Service Committee involved in this project are Natalie Chesson, Habitat For Humanity Wake County; Monique Delage, Habitat For Humanity Wake County; Betsy Lingenheld, Residential Construction Resources; Joshua Mauney, Paragon Building Group; Steve Minor, Noble Renovation; Jeff Wiblitzhouser, Paradise Found Construction; and Sally Williams, Colorful Concepts Interior Design.
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