The Bay Area Alumni Chapter of Beta Gamma Sigma (BGS-SF) completed a day of hands-on reconstruction work under the auspices of Rebuilding Together™ Oakland (RTO) on Saturday, October 14th at their annual Block Building program in Oakland. Volunteers from BGS-SF gathered with other volunteers from the community, including volunteers from the East Bay Municipal Utilities District (EBMUD) to repair plumbing and floor boards, replace gutters and siding, and add interior and exterior paint finish for a deserving Oakland resident.
Arriving near Sobrante Park at 7:30am on Saturday for quick cup of coffee, fruit and muffin, volunteers signed release forms, met the House Captain and Team Leader for the project, dressed in an RTO tee-shirt, and were assigned duties. A safety brochure set the tone for a productive, fun and safe day. Many of the volunteers formed work teams, and began rebuilding efforts.
On this particular Oakland site, much preparation work had already begun. Earlier in the week, volunteer carpenters had already removed old bathroom boards and fixtures and had begun to replace them with newer and safer ones. Other volunteers had removed gutters that needed replacement, and a handicapped access ramp was replaced with a newly constructed one.
By Saturday, the Building Block day of Rebuilding Together Oakland, ladders were in place, and materials for remaining repairs were waiting to be cut and installed, and stirred and applied. The day went quickly. In between trips for more supplies, water breaks and a break for lunch, volunteers met the owner of the house. The owner was delighted and thankful for so many eager volunteers. For some of the BGS-SF Alumni volunteers this was the first time volunteering with RTO, but by mid-day they admitted that they were thrilled to be working alongside so many other energetic volunteers.
Like all makeovers, the before and after pictures are impressive. The day ended with a feeling of satisfaction, and the need to hit the washroom to remove paint and dust from body and clothes. This project was an extension of the annual Rebuilding Together day that takes place the last weekend in April around the country. This year’s project involved nine residences as well as a church and school which serves the community. Once again, such a project demonstrated what organized efforts from the community can do. The success of these efforts depend on the contributions many different members of the community.
Rebuilding Together Oakland (rebuildingtogetheroakland.org), an affiliate of Rebuilding Together™, rehabilitates the homes of low-income elderly and disabled homeowners, so they may continue to live in safety, comfort and independence. RTO utilizes the hard work of skilled and unskilled volunteers, and leverages financial and in-kind donations to make these improvements at no cost to the homeowners. Each year, thousands of volunteers come together on the last weekend of April to help restore the homes of their low-income neighbors. The Rebuilding Together national program was launched in Washington D.C. in 1988 as Christmas in April USA, and later changed its named to Rebuilding Together to reflect an extension of programs beyond just the April workday.
The San Francisco Area Alumni Chapter of Beta Gamma Sigma (BGSSF.Org) is community comprised of diverse professionals who have achieved lifetime membership in the Beta Gamma Sigma ™ National Business School Honor Society through exemplary achievements in business academics. The Alumni Chapter engages in activities that aim to integrate members with the business and business education communities of the San Francisco and Silicon Valley areas.