Applications sought in city for free home repairs
SHAMOKIN - Volunteers of Central Susquehanna Opportunities Inc. are going door-to-door in the city to collect applications for free home repairs to be performed this summer during a Christian mission work camp.
The collection began Tuesday and will continue through March 11, beyond the original March 1 deadline, said Gale Zalar, CSO community action director. CSO volunteers will also be calling potential applicants, including victims of September 2011 flooding.
Zalar said CSO's focus will be on Sunbury and Market streets, both of which are gateways to Shamokin; however, residents of any section of Shamokin are encouraged to apply.
Applications can also be submitted by residents of surrounding communities, according to a project manager with the nonprofit Group Cares, which is organizing the work camp. Pat Rumberger, of Northumberland County Area Agency on Aging, said the county agency also is making applicant referrals who live both inside and outside Shamokin.
Group Cares will bring 400-plus high school-aged volunteers and adult mentors from across the nation to the Shamokin area on a Christian mission in late July to perform work on upward of 70 homes in the area.
Repairs include exterior painting and light carpentry, and are available to those with financial or physical hardships. The project manager estimated on average $375 is spent on each home.
Volunteers are tasked to raise $451 each to join the mission, some of which is used on project materials. The host community is also responsible for contributing approximately $19,000. The city and Area Agency on Aging, cosponsors of the visit, are working together to find local contributors to donate funding towards the project.
Group Cares is awaiting permission from Shamokin Area School Board to bunk in a district building during their visit.
Shamokin's is one of 42 work camps being organized by Group Cares nationwide this summer.
Program volunteers had performed a work camp in the Shamokin area in 2002, when repairs were made to 25 homes in Shamokin and neighboring communities.
Applications can be picked up either at City Hall, 47 E. Independence St., or CSO Inc., Grant Street entrance of the Northumberland County Career and Arts Center. Call City Hall at 644-0876 or CSO Inc. at 644-6575 with questions. For information on Group Cares, visit www.groupcares.org.