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Revitalize Milwaukee holds biggest ‘Block Build’ home repair event

Date
August 14, 2021
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Bruce Harrison - TMJ4

MILWAUKEE — Hundreds of volunteers gathered in Lincoln Village neighborhood on Friday and Saturday to pull off the largest Block Build MKE to date.

The annual event, organized by nonprofit Revitalize Milwaukee, brings together volunteers and community partners to make home repairs, many critical, at low-income properties.

“It’s not about cosmetic, it’s really about functionality and making sure folks can stay in their home and be there safely,” said Lynnea Katz-Petted, Revitalize Milwaukee CEO.

Over two days, the Block Build covered more than 1,000 repairs at 27 homes, up from the previous record of 20 homes. Volunteers set up their base of operations at 9th and Hayes.

At the Medel home, volunteers — with the help of professional electricians, carpenters and plumbers — replaced two bathroom sinks, ceiling fans and made some other electrical fixes throughout the house.

“It’s going to make things a lot better. It’s going to be a nice little quality of life improvement,” said Daniel Medel, who lives there with his parents.

Medel said before the Block Build, his parents had financial concerns about making repairs and weren’t really sure who to call.

The Build works on homes that are owned by low-income elderly, veterans, and low-income owners with disabilities.

Katz-Petted said their budget for the weekend was about $300,000, with money coming from corporate partners, individuals donations and grants from local foundations.

“Everyone wants a house that they can stay in, they want to be loved and respected and then they want a safe place to call home,” said Katz-Petted. “It’s our pleasure to be here, and we’re certainly honored to be a part of the community’s rebuild.”

More information about partnering with Revitalize Milwaukee or applying for home repairs can be found at www.freehomerepairs.org.