World Changers lending hand to West Riverside neighborhoods

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Scott Reimick (left), project coordinator for World Changers, and Zanie Davidson of the Burton Street Neighborhood Association talk with homeowner Dorethea Lee (seated) whose home is receiving a new roof and other repairs during World Changers Week.

Zanie Davidson, a lifelong resident of the Burton Street neighborhood and treasurer of the Burton Street Community Association, has worked tirelessly coordinating home repair projects with World Changers and the City of Asheville.

“I am happy to help make this happen,” Davidson said. “These housing repairs will help a lot of the people who helped raise me in this neighborhood. I am thrilled that they will be able to receive housing repairs that they may not be able to afford otherwise.”

The majority of homeowners who will benefit from this initiative are elderly and/or residents with disabilities.

Neighborhoods within Asheville’s West Riverside Operation Weed & Seed area will reap the benefits of the visiting “World Changers,” program, an initiative of the North American Mission Board (Southern Baptist Convention).

The organization is
partnering with the Buncombe Baptist Association, the City of
Asheville, and the Housing Authority of the City of Asheville. World
Changers will supply the labor and expertise and the City of Asheville
and Housing Authority will pay for materials needed for the repairs.

More than 400 teenagers participating in World Changers are coming to
Asheville from all over the country to spend a week assisting in a
variety of home improvement and beautification projects. In the Weed
& Seed area, these youths will work on more than 15 homes in the
Burton Street neighborhood where they will paint, lay drywall, repair
roofs, pour cement, build wheelchair ramps and plant flowers.

They will also work in the Pisgah View housing development where they
will paint and help with final cleanings in about 10 vacant apartments
in an effort to make apartments more quickly available for new
tenants. They will also paint the community room in the Community
Center and work on grounds beautification.

This is one of many projects being organized by Weed & Seed partners and residents of the West Riverside area.

The presence of World Changers has sparked an interest in exploring
ways local youths can give back to their own communities in a similar
fashion. Fresh paint, new roofs, and the community coming together to
make this all happen will show that residents of the West Riverside
area are dedicated to improving their quality of life.

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