Mr. and Mrs. G
Clifton Park, Baltimore City
Mr. and Mrs. G, aged 82 and 70, have known each other for over 55 years and have been married for 48. They moved into their home in 1985 after winning a settlement from their landlord in their old apartment. “The old apartment was bad, it had rats, and mold, and we would get parking citations on game days if we were parked in the wrong place. I took our landlord to court for the conditions and we won! We used the settlement for the down payment on the house” - recalls Mr. G on how he purchased his home.
Mr. G grew up in Southeast Baltimore and Mrs. G grew up in East Baltimore. Both in large families. Before getting married, they each had children. Then more while they were married. Now, they have over 44 grandchildren. And they live in the surrounding area and visit Mr. and Mrs. G often. So many great memories have been shared in this home over the years. Each generation is proud to call this house their home.
Mr. G was always the handyman of the home, but is no longer able to physically do repairs. He was able to teach himself home repair skills and even installed a metal rail on the exterior of their home himself. He credits his school metal workshop classes. Due to a work accident, he had surgery on his hand that required a bone to be moved. He didn't let that stop him from doing what he could to continue serving his community and keeping up his home. He and Mrs. G still run a weekly food pantry that feeds their community every Wednesday, as well as attend church.
Both Mr. and Mrs. G retired from Greater Baltimore Medical Center (GBMC) in 2005 and 2017 respectively. Shortly after her retirement, Mrs. G had to have surgery on her back. Walking up and down the stairs in her home became more challenging after that surgery. Mr. G had to follow his wife up the stairs to make sure she did not fall backwards. Using the bathroom also became challenging as their claw foot tub had a high barrier to entry and was difficult to modify for accessibility.
Health and Safety Repairs Addressed:
Mrs. G heard from a friend about home repair services and gave the Housing Upgrades to Benefit Seniors program a call. She was then paired with Rebuilding Together Baltimore. We were able to complete the following repairs and improvements in the home:
Repairing front porch roof
Treated for termites
Installed a stairlift on the main stairs
Replaced the service entrance cable
Installed a downspout extension
Installed multiple grab bars in the bathroom for shower and toilet area
Installed a handrail on the basement stairs
Installed a handrail and grab bar at the top of the main stairs
Installed a smoke/CO detector on each floor of the home
Provided fire extinguisher in the kitchen
Since the repairs have been completed life has been “a blessing!” says Mrs. G about her experience. She feels safer moving around because of handrails and grab bars. Mr G. has less stress worrying about Mrs. G being able to go up and down stairs because it has been easier since the installation of the chair lift on the stairs.