A Spanish Fork family with special needs children was surprised with a basement remodel completed by the Heart2Home foundation in December. Jeff and Debbie Strong have adopted over 10 special needs children through the years. They needed a place for their children to play and for their large family to gather. Their neighbor, Susan Chapman nominated them for a basement completion.
When Heart2Home was presented with the project, they could see that this very deserving family needed help. Fundraising began right away with help from Councilman Mike Mendenhall and Susan Chapman. There were only a few weeks to raise funds and source donations of product and volunteers for this project. But when people heard about the amazing Strong Family, they were very willing to help according to Christina Nielsen with Heart2Home.
Jeff Strong was in on the secret while his unsuspecting wife was sent on a short trip to San Diego that she 'won' that was the project set up.
The project began late on Monday, December 17. Friends, neighbors and community members poured in to help. Hundreds of volunteers worked side by side with skilled tradespeople to complete the basement form cement to a finished indoor playground and family room in 3 days.
Debbie Strong said, "I was absolutely completely surprised. I was completely shocked. I was gone 4 days. I didn't think it was even possible to do something like that in 4 days."
Strong said the family has been enjoying the space and has even hosted two family parties in the weeks since it was completed.
"It's so nice to have space for the whole family to be together," she said. One of the best parts for her is a chair that brings their son confined to a wheelchair downstairs. He is too big to carry and otherwise it wouldn't be possible for him to be in the space with the family.
"It's been so fun for the kids, even though it's cold weather outside, there's a place for them to play and get exercise," she said.
Strong said her son that's blind has especially enjoyed the swing. "Being able to swing inside the house in the winter time has been such a treat for him."
The project was truly a community effort. Contractor Brad Wilson organized a succession of construction crews. Lowes donated the bulk of the needed construction materials, including everything needed to put a bathroom in the basement.
Triple T Plumbing, Heating & Cooling installed ductwork.
Utah artist Randy Blackburn spent many hours designing and completing the wall murals that make this basement playroom extra special.
Knights Furniture donated a large sectional for the family's gathering area.
Facebook friends and neighbors purchased many items and made donations too.
DoTerra and Nielson Interiors purchased playground equipment.
Shepherds Carpets (SF) donated the 'grass' carpeting.
Artist Chelsea Argyle did a special painting for the family of their 3 children who have died in the past 2 years.
Greg Adamson is the head of Heart2Home. They are a volunteer group of semi skilled labor and general contractors and fund raisers and people who just love to help improve the lives of others. They do home remodels for families in need - often they are surprises. Heart2Home fund-raises and seek out donations of goods and services then get to work helping people.