NN on the Radio!
Members speak about Neighbors Network
Hear what Neighbors Network members say when they call in to a local radio show.
Stories from a Neighbors Network Volunteer who enjoyed helping Members by doing tasks he’s good at over the last four years
Alice, in her 90s, was almost blind. But she was relatively healthy and could see well enough to take care of herself in her small house. A big problem was not being able to read the numbers on a clock to tell the time. A family Member sent her a talking watch, but the instructions on how to program it were written in very small type. My first assignment as a Neighbors Network Volunteer was to set up that watch for her so she could know the time. Many other NN Volunteers helped this wonderful woman. When she died last year, her family made a donation in her honor to NN.
Barbara had a large shed in her backyard containing valuable household goods, toys for her grandchildren, tools, etc. A tree limb had fallen onto the plastic panel roof and torn a large hole. Rain water was pouring in. I was able to install a new rafter under the hole and then patch the roof with a piece of sheet metal from Home Depot. Now, she doesn’t have to worry about more water damage.
Carol had a problem with rain water falling on her head whenever she went out the back door. The back porch had a roof, but there was a large crack where the roof butted up against the house over the door. I was able to fill that crack with a strip of foam and then caulk the seams so that water no longer poured through. Now, she can come and go without getting wet.
Donna and Dan were ashamed of the condition of the deck in front of their house. John’s hobby was sculpting, and he had a large studio/workshop, which he was proud to show me. He wished he had the strength to repair his deck. I brought my belt sander and stripped off the loose finish. Then the three of us went to Home Depot to pick out a new stain. On my second visit I applied the stain. Now, the entrance to the house looks really good.
Emily liked to decorate for Christmas. She had three wire reindeer with lights that she had always put out in her front yard to delight the neighborhood kids. But in a weakened condition from illness, she couldn’t get to these decorations in her overfilled garage. I was able to locate the boxes, set up the reindeer, and run an extension cord to light them up. After Christmas, I returned to put them away. I have done this for three years in a row. Her eyes light up with the reindeer when we turn on the switch.
Francine had old, broken Venetian blinds on four windows in her bedroom. A family Member bought her new blinds, but they needed to be installed. Once I got the hang of it (no pun intended), it was easy. Now, she can adjust her blinds with ease.
Gwen liked things spotless. She was able to clean most items herself, but a large metal and glass chandelier over her dining table was beyond her reach. I was able to move the table, get up on a stool, and clean the globes and arms of the light. Now, it gleams.
Helen was concerned about security. The lock on her back door was hard to operate, and she was never sure it was engaged. I replaced the old hardware with a new dead bolt and now she feels secure.
Janice and Jim wanted to be able to watch TV in bed. A family Member had bought them a new TV and the wall mounting hardware. I was able to locate a stud in the wall that could support the weight and install the TV. Now, using their remote, they can enjoy watching their shows in comfort.
Kay wanted to replace the overhead light in her bedroom with a ceiling fan. Together, we went to Lowes and picked out a fan. Standing on her bed, I removed the light and replaced it with the fan. Now, she can have air circulation on hot nights.
Louise could not get her kitchen electrical outlets to work. The problem was easily fixed by resetting the ground fault detector on the master outlet. Now, she knows how to do it if it happens again.
Mary had water on her bathroom floor. The pipe connecting the toilet tank was loose. A simple turn of a wrench fixed the problem. Now, she has a dry floor.
Olivia had a beautiful, real Christmas tree, but it needed to be removed without spilling the water still in the stand all over the carpet. I was able to carry the tree upright, with the stand still attached, out of the house with no spillage. Now, she can restore her living room to pre-Christmas condition.
Penny had a screened in back porch, but she was afraid to use it because she had seen a small snake inside the screened area. We inspected the porch and found a crack where we thought the snake had gotten in. I attached a board to block the opening. A week later, she reported seeing the snake again. I returned and found another small crack, which I blocked. Now, there is no more snake.
Queenie liked to leave her house for several months in the summer to visit her daughter. She arranged for a yard service to take care of the outside, but she needed someone she trusted to go inside to check on things. I went by on a regular basis, checked the A/C, watered the plants in the window boxes, and made sure no water or pests had gotten in. I sent her reports on email to let her know all was well. Now, she could enjoy her visit without worrying about her house.
Rose had a granddaughter with a pet turtle. The turtle kept growing, and the girl could no longer care for it. Mary had a large aquarium and agreed to take the turtle. The turtle is now as big as a dinner plate, and makes quite a mess in the aquarium. Mary would like to get rid of her pet, but it’s not easy. In Florida, it is against the law to turn a pet turtle loose in the wild. She and her granddaughter feel for the animal and do not want to see it die. I come once a week, pump out the dirty water and add new. Now, at least for a while, she can keep the turtle.