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On Tuesday, October 28, eight women from Airbnb volunteered at PCRI’s newest rental home, prepping and planting new landscaping in the home’s front yard alongside Travis Phillips and Kirk Rea from PCRI.
Under the threat of downpours, the eight volunteers cleared debris from the yard, prepped the ground for planting and got their boots and shovels muddy planting ornamental grasses, trees and other plants. Home Depot’s Jantzen Beach store provided the plants and landscape material for the front yard, creating a colorful and low-maintenance first impression for the home’s residents and neighbors.
The volunteers excellent teamwork ensured the project was finished ahead of schedule–just in time to pack up before the day’s rains started coming down, giving extra moisture to the newly-installed plants.
The new home, being built by Albina Construction, is a 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom house that will soon be available to rent by a qualifying low-income family on PCRI’s affordable housing waiting list. In addition to below-market rents for future residents, the home features a wheelchair-accessible first floor, including bedroom, bathroom and all living spaces.
Home Depot’s contribution and the volunteer labor help stretch the project’s budget and ensure durable, healthy, high-quality materials can be used inside and outside of the home. Green building certification for the home is being provided by Earth Advantage; the home is expected to achieve Earth Advantage Platinum certification. Construction is anticipated to be complete in late-November.
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Last weekend, PCRI and Cascadia Green Building Council’s Emerging Professionals organized a hands-on volunteer home improvement project in one of PCRI’s affordable rental homes. The volunteers teamed up with Green Hammer Construction in mid-February to observe and participate in Green Hammer’s Home Performance assessment process, conducting weatherization testing, inspecting insulation and verifying safe operation of combustion appliances, like the furnace.
Armed with information gained from the testing, the crowd of nearly two dozen volunteers (pictured at right), led by PCRI, Emerging Professionals and Andrew Morphis of Green Hammer Construction, tackled projects to make the home healthier, more comfortable and more efficient. Existing carpet was removed to expose wood floors that were ready for refinishing. Old kitchen cabinets were deconstructed to make way for new, more usable ones. Windows that were previously painted shut were once again made operable for fresh-air ventilation. Insulation was improved and volunteers slathered mastic on the heating ducts to ensure they operated as efficiently as possible. All of the materials that volunteers removed were carefully sorted to enable recycling and keep as much as possible out of the landfill.
PCRI’s Executive Director, Maxine Fitzpatrick greeted the volunteers before they started on the project. She thanked them for their service, adding that their volunteer efforts are priceless in supporting PCRI’s ability to provide below-market rate rental homes to residents who rely on these opportunities to stabilize their lives and return to self-sufficiency.
In addition to the home improvement benefits realized by PCRI, volunteers utilized the day as an opportunity to learn more about efficiency, home performance testing and existing buildings.
“I think there were a lot of learning opportunities for energy efficiency projects as well as the real world variability of existing buildings and the challenges that they inherently represent,” said Emerging Professionals volunteer Jackie Kingen.
To reward the volunteers’ hard work, Parr Lumber rolled up to the work site with their BBQ trailer and grilled up a meal of burgers, hot dogs and veggie burgers (plus some chips and cookies for good measure!) to refuel the volunteers on the day of the event.
Click on any of the pictures below to view the full size image.
PCRI’s is a Community Partner with Cascadia Green Building Council and the International Living Future Institute for their upcoming Living Future 2012 Conference. The conference, scheduled in May, will be the Northwest’s premier Green Building conference and expo. More information about the conference can be found at the Cascadia GBC’s website.
PCRI and Cascadia Green Building Council’s Emerging Professionals are teaming up with Green Hammer Construction for a hands-on volunteer project on March 3, 2012.
Volunteers of all kinds are encouraged to participate – no green building knowledge is necessary! For the project, Emerging Professionals and other volunteers (you need not be an Emerging Professionals member to join) will utilize information gained from pre-improvement testing performed in mid-February to implement upgrades and other refurbishments targeted to improve the efficiency, health and durability of the home.
Does the thought of all that volunteering make you hungry? We’ve got you covered! Parr Lumber is generously grilling up a BBQ lunch for volunteers on the day of the event.
Please note: registration is required for the volunteer event. Important information (including the volunteer site) will be distributed to the list of registered participants. Please contact Travis at PCRI if you have any issues with registration.
PCRI is pleased to announce our alliance as a Community Partner with Cascadia Green Building Council and the International Living Future Institute for their upcoming Living Future 2012unConference. This volunteer project leads up to the May conference. More information about the unConference can be found at the Cascadia GBC’s website.
We’re excited to announce a new partnership with the Cascadia Green Building Council’s Emerging Professionals! In March 2012, the Cascadia Chapter of Emerging Professionals, with generous assistance provided by Green Hammer Construction, will join PCRI for a hands-on volunteer project.
For the project, expected to take place on March 3, 2012, Emerging Professionals volunteers will join PCRI staff and Andrew Morphis, Home Performance Division Manager for Green Hammer, to conduct home performance testing in one of PCRI’s affordable rental homes. With the information gained from the testing, Emerging Professionals volunteers will implement efficiency upgrades and other refurbishments targeted to improve the efficiency, health and durability of the home.
Want to get involved or learn more? Join the Emerging Professionals at their monthly meet-up, Tuesday, February 7 at 6:30 p.m. at Portland’s Lucky Lab Beer Hall on NW Quimby. PCRI staff and Emerging Professionals organizers will be on hand to share details and enroll volunteers. We’ll also post additional details here on the PCRI News blog and on our events calendar.
PCRI is also excited to announce our alliance as a Community Partner with Cascadia Green Building Council and the International Living Future Institute for their upcoming Living Future 2012 unConference. PCRI staff will join Living Future organizers for their inaugural event on January 24 at Hopworks Urban Brewery’s innovative “eco-brew” facility. More information about the unConference can be found at the Cascadia GBC’s website.