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Vivian - A Life Rebuilt

Updated: Apr 2

Vivian has been living in her 1066 square foot home for the past 43 years. The home she grew up in and raised her family in. A long-time Central Florida resident, she can recall a time before the hustle and bustle of our community today. Behind every front door is a story of home. Behind Vivian's front door are decades of stories and memories. Progressing years took a toll on Vivian's health and home. Attempts to maintain the home she once knew and loved fell short due to poverty and hardships. Her happy home soon became a place she no longer recognized. Until she heard about Rebuilding Together of Central Florida.

Rebuilding Together of Central Florida provides free critical home repair to neighbors in need. Since 2002, Rebuilding Together of Central Florida has been an advocate for safe and healthy housing in Central Florida. Vivian sent in her application for free critical home repair. It was not long before she received the call that would answer her prayers.

Vivian's once cottage-like home was in a state of disrepair. The outside of the home was in a dreary state. Overgrown foliage and a build-up of debris took spotlight over the home itself. Chipping paint, dirt, and mold covered the exterior walls. Yard work and outdoor labor is not a task for the elderly. Even light landscaping became an impossible task for Vivian in the hot Florida temperatures and sun.

Immediately upon entering the home major health issues were visible. An extensive black mold was present in every room. Asbestos was present in the old tile flooring. There had been no running water for two years. Flooring in multiple rooms was lifting or missing. The house was no longer a home for Vivian. Vivian's home was so damaged that her family could not come to visit her. She missed being able to spend time with her young grandson. In every room she entered was a memory of what used to be, paired with the burden she was now faced with today.

"There are just so many people to thank. So many people played a part that I know we can never repay them, but I hope they know how truly grateful we are. All the companies who donated time, materials, expertise, skill, and friends, family members, community members and even strangers who contributed monetary donations all play a part in bringing my home back. Rebuilding Together truly showed what it means to be "rebuilding together." God Bless you all. " - Vivian Olson

It takes a village to repair homes, revitalize communities, and rebuild lives. Partners, sponsors, and volunteers all went above and beyond, each doing their part to help a neighbor in need. Rebuilding Together of Central Florida partnered with DryFast to remove the mold, Deacon Environmental for asbestos remediation. Spectrum, Eraclides Gelman, Orchid Medical, and Jewett Orthopaedic employees all volunteered. Thanks to the many helping hands, Vivian's house was transformed into a safe and healthy home.

Vivian's home received a new roof, new flooring, a fresh coat of paint on the inside, and out. Exterior cracks were mended, gutters were replaced. Contaminants were removed, and after two years water had been restored to the home.

Having a safe and healthy home is so important. Vivian's story is one that is similar to many. Rebuilding Together of Central Florida has a mission to repair homes, revitalize communities, and rebuild lives. Our vision is for safe and healthy homes and communities for everyone. Vivians story has a happy ending. To this day, her home is a place she is proud of. Her home is safe and healthy. Vivians family now visits her regularly. Her grandson stays in the room Rebuilding Together built especially for him.

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