Since 2004 Mike Donnelly has helped his father construct single household houses in Cape Coral. However about three years in the past, Donnelly had a dialog with an Military Colonel that fully modified his perspective on constructing and renovating houses.

In December 2018, Donnelly helped make a makeover for Enrique DeJesus, an Military Colonel. When Donnelly spoke with DeJesus and his spouse Yvonne, they advised him how they made this retro match for his or her dad and mom who had a incapacity so they may get round extra simply.

“Then they mentioned, ‘Why do not you do this?’” Donnelly recollects. “A giant mild bulb went out.

“We spoke on a Saturday and I had modified my enterprise mannequin on a Monday.”

Donnelly mentioned he was searching for one thing within the building / outsourcing business that might fulfill the consumer in addition to himself.

“Invariably the consumer would need a greater home whereas I used to be frequently searching for the subsequent deal,” he mentioned. “The prospect of making accessibility and independence for individuals with disabilities, seniors and veterans in want ought to be one in all our high priorities and is a key ingredient in it. Some individuals could not get into the lavatory as a result of their wheelchair was too huge or they could not climb over the bathe as a result of extreme mobility points. Some have been in mattress since delivery and wanted a carry from mattress to toilet. In the meantime, mother or dad has again ache from lifting them. Once we are profitable in renovating or constructing, the extent of satisfaction of these individuals in want could make you cry. “

Donnelly’s mission is to create barrier-free houses, which is able to create whole accessibility and independence for these in want. The work will embrace wheelchair accessible ramps, wheelchair accessible showers, wider doorways and doorways, and good expertise. Whereas Donnelly mentioned barrier-free houses can add to the resale worth of any residence, the actual story lies with those that profit: the disabled, the aged, the veterans.

A complete of 61 million individuals have a incapacity in the US, based on the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention. That is one in 4 adults.

“There may be hardly something prefer it right here within the building world,” Donnelly mentioned. “I’ve by no means been concerned in something like this. What an incredible feeling to actually profit others on this method. “

Donnelly desires to associate with many gamers within the building business in addition to organizations that serve individuals with disabilities. The aim is to acquire donations and in-kind donations to scale back the prices of renovating or constructing a brand new residence. Through the years, he has made contacts with many contacts that remind him to remain in contact on this venture. The non-profit web site – – enhances its for-profit web site –

“We need to discover suppliers, consultants, residence well being specialists, age specialists in place,” he mentioned. “You cease and give it some thought – we’re all on this world for an extremely brief time. We’re right here for a objective. I name it selfless selfishness. While you assist others, you’re serving to your self. In truth, it is egocentric since you get as a lot out of it as they do. However you’re serving to these with mobility points to have a greater life. “

One home Donnelly studied is the one which Gene Leber in-built 2017.

A paraplegic for 40 years, Leber had already constructed a home when he lived in Ohio. Leber labored for a technical firm that studied practical electrical stimulation. The electrodes hooked up to the paralyzed limb helped ship small electrical impulses to the paralyzed muscle groups to revive or enhance their operate.

“Mike has the primary building firm I’ve met right here that’s dedicated to this,” Leber mentioned. “I believe some building corporations will donate for this, as it might be a write-off for charity. And there may be such an enormous want.

Leber mentioned upgrades may vary from putting in a ramp in entrance of the home to widening the bathe / lavatory so individuals have the power to show round of their wheelchairs. Seize bars, taller bathroom seats and lips on the showers are different options.

Leber wonders why increasingly individuals do not do barrier-free design if they will reside of their houses lengthy after retirement.

“We’re residing longer,” Leber mentioned. “I’ve seen {couples} residing in a home, and one in all them has had a stroke. It is a good home, however it’s lower than 50% usable and the renovation can price anyplace from $ 50,000 to $ 100,000. There are stairs, a automotive wash bathe or a big tub in entrance and it’s now not practical.

Donnelly mentioned he continues to unfold the phrase so houses could be renovated or constructed with barrier-free performance.

“It is so accessible,” he says. “Each home ought to be constructed like this. And it definitely will increase the worth of a home.

“I’m not in a position to do that myself. I need to work with different builders. Fixing somebody’s home is one factor. Making a barrier-free design and altering somebody’s life is one other. The mission is unquestionably value it. What can we do to assist others? It is not about me.

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