TSAHC Impact Story: Marisa and Vincent Velasquez*

July 12, 2018

The Velasquez family has lived in their Lockhart home since 1969. After living here for almost SO years, the Velasquez family still enjoys the tight-knit community in Lockhart. Marisa Velasquez and her husband raised their son, Vincent, in their Pear Street home. When Marisa’s husband passed away, Vincent moved back into the home to care for his mother. Marisa suffers from dementia and has mobility issues that force her to use a wheelchair to get around her home.

Both Marisa and Vincent are on fixed incomes, so maintaining their home was nearly impossible with their limited income and Marisa’s high medical bills. In addition to accessibility modifications for Marisa to safely and comfortably use her wheelchair, the SO-year old home needed a lot of repairs to improve the living conditions for the Velasquez family. For accessibility modifications, Marisa needed a tub to shower conversion, flooring repair, ADA-approved kitchen cabinets, and an accessible ramp. While another home repair agency focused on these modifications, Austin Habitat for Humanity focused on other critical repairs that improved Marisa and Vincent’s safety.

First, Austin Habitat removed and disposed of the existing metal roof and underlying shingles in order to install new 3O-year shingles to give the Velasquez family a strong roof over their heads. To upgrade the electrical, we removed an old meter and relocated it to the west side of the home. We completed the electrical upgrade with 2OO-amp service and installed a new brake panel and meter. Austin Habitat also installed a new exterior door and glass storm panel so Marisa and Vincent will feel secure in their home. We also built a new3′ x 4′ patio with steps and handrails on the west side and installed gutters to divert water from the new patio and front of the home.

Before the repair, Marisa reported she strongly disagreed with the statement, “I feel safe in my home in its present condition” due to the leaking roof and outdated electric breaker. In a post-survey after the repairs were complete, Marisa strongly agreed that she felt safe in her home and said, “Austin Habitat did a great job in my home. Thank you.”

Thank you to TSAHC’s Texas Foundations Fund for supporting the Velasquez family!

*Clients’ names changed to protect identity

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