Tuesday Toolman Program Receives Grant for Bigger Projects
"The duct tape...slam it and then the duct tape...," said Dawn Barnum, a homeowner receiving assistance from the Tuesday Toolmem.
But duct tape only works for so long. If the walls of the Barnum sisters' home could talk, they would tell you over a century of family stories. They would also tell you that they haven't been repaired in decades, until now.
"In this particular case we're basically redoing the entire bathroom. We're adding some support in the basement. We're hiring contractors, and we're also doing our typical Tuesday Toolmen stuff at this home," said Lance Queen, Coordinator for Tuesday Toolmen Program
A group of retirees from salesmen to engineers have been repairing the homes of Lansing seniors for years, but now they can take on bigger projects like the Barnum home thanks to an $80,000 grant from the AARP.
"There was no way possible that we were going to be able to get even half this stuff done.... I mean the faucet even getting that fixed," said Barnum.
Lucky for the Barnum sisters there are men with a wide variety of skills that will be there every week until the job is done.
"Some know electrical... some know plumbing... and some know nothing and just show up," joked Doug Morgan, one of the Tuesday Toolman.
For these retired men, the projects do more than just fill time. They have become a close knit group, and they say that as long as Lansing needs them.... they'll be there, every Tuesday morning.
"What these guys are doing.... it's just unbelievable. I'm going to start crying again. It means a lot," said Barnum.
The Tuesday Toolmen also do repairs at the homes of people with disabilities. If you would like to apply for assistance you can call 517-372-5980 to request an application. If you would like to volunteer you can call that same number and apply to be a member of the Tuesday Toolmen. The Greater Lansing Housing Coalition also accepts donations to the program. You can donate by contacting the organization at that number. The Tuesday Toolmen have made repairs to over 150 homes since the program began. They hope to do even more now that they have this grant.