Alma Project

The Alma Project – Year Two

Sunday, March 4th, 2012

Hey everyone, hope you all had a fantastic weekend!  We did a lot of demo in the hall bathroom and reworked the cabinet vanity too, can’t wait to show you!  Now for my exciting announcement… it’s something so important to me and that’s the adoption of a second house for our Alma Project !!

Regular readers may recall how we adopted our first home last year and asI mentioned earlier this year, we really wanted to adopt a second home, in fact we want to adopt a new home every year. So we did!  This one is bigger than our first and has different problems, but we’re very excited to get started.

alma project logo

I can’t think of any better way to bring new readers up to speed on this project than a quote from last year’s initial announcement that we were starting this charitable project, so here it is.

“Whenever someone asks me where I see myself in five years, the first answer that I give is ‘fixing up spaces for those who really need it, not those who can afford it’. I feel in my heart that I want to spend part of my time giving back some of what’s been given to me. The mantra I have heard over and over in my head for months now is ‘there are real people with real needs who need real solutions.’ I talked it over with my hub, and we came to an agreement that we were going to reach out into our own community and find somewhere to help.

We called the Committee on the Shelterless (or COTS) to offer our services, and as with all non-profits, they welcome all the help they can get. We gave them some information, and told them what we had to offer. They ran a background check, and a week later, we adopted a house. The Alma House.

Historically, the act of almsgiving is a material donation to the needy. ‘Alma’ in Spanish means ‘spirit’ or ‘soul’. The name of the street where our first adopted house is located is Alma Drive. We deemed it a sign, and The Alma Project was born.

The Alma Project is the transformation of a fixer upper house into a comfortable functional home for women who desperately need it. Living inside the Alma House are single mothers, previously homeless, who reside for free on the condition that they are learning skills, stabilizing their lives, attending counseling, and remain drug and alcohol free. These mothers are saving their money from their part time jobs and raising their children as best as they can. They have no time or money to fix up this house. They are real women with real needs who need real solutions.”

So friends, I’m excited to share with you the second house and projects we will be taking on this year.  We donate all of our time, but we raise the money to do these projects with help from readers, friends, and donations from home improvement stores.

Allow me to introduce you to our Alma House #2.

alma project house 2

It’s a four bedroom home that houses four families – 4 moms and up to 8 children under one roof.

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Season of Giving

Monday, December 19th, 2011

Hey everyone ~ what a fabulous weekend we had!  It was a great party Saturday night with many of our friends and family in attendance.  We all gathered in the living room around the piano and sang carols with a loud rendition of the Twelve Days of Christmas that included everyone at the party ~ it’s the highlight and an annual tradition.  We spent Sunday in San Francisco at the Dickens Fair (ever been? very fun!) and touring Union Square with the big tree right in the center all lit up for the season.  Here’s another tour of San Francisco at Christmas you might enjoy . . .

As you all know, the mister and I adopted a house earlier this year (see this post on origin of the Alma Project) and we’ve spend the year fixing up the house when we had a spare weekend thanks to donations from so many of you.  On Friday, we stopped by to surprise the families with a Christmas tree and some other holiday decorations.

alma visit

 

Becky from Vinyl Crafts kindly donated this inspirational subway art for the wall and a fresh wreath and poinsettias brought some Christmas cheer to the kitchen nook.

 

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Alma House: Laundry Center Complete

Monday, September 19th, 2011

Oh hello y’all, how are things?  I’m feeling pretty good today having finally finished the laundry room over at our adopted Alma House.   For those who don’t know, earlier this year, the hubs and I decided to adopt a house in partnership with our local COTS (Committee on the Shelterless). 

The Alma Project began as the transformation of a fixer upper house into a comfortable functional home for women who desperately need it. Living inside the Alma House are single mothers, previously homeless, who reside for free on the condition that they are learning skills, stabilizing their lives, attending counseling, and that they remain drug and alcohol free. Busy remodeling their lives, these mothers have no time or money to fix up this house.

Over the past few months, we’ve given our time to this project with money donated by so many of you. Some of you blogged about the Alma house and others held small fundraisers to benefit the project.  We cannot thank you enough. 

In April, we spent a day transforming the entry hallway to create better utility:

alma hallway after

 

In May, we built them this media center

alma house media storage center

 

Over the summer, we set out to build the families a laundry room center in the garage and at last it is complete! 

Here’s a glimpse of the space a few months ago:

laundry room before

 

Here it is today!

laundry center alma after

 

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