An electrician mobilized a Massachusetts community to help an elderly woman who was living in squalor renovate her home.
John Kinney had showed up at Gloria Scott’s house in Woburn to repair a damaged lighting fixture, according to People magazine. Scott, 72, had been living by herself there for over 10 years.
Massachusetts home in disrepair
Kinney quickly realized that not only was the lighting fixture broken, but the house was in bad shape. The kitchen sink was leaking. The plumbing was damaged. The ceiling had holes in it. Raccoons were getting inside. Scott lacked running water.
He finished the job and went home, but he couldn’t stop thinking about Scott’s predicament. She had told him that she couldn’t afford home repairs. She had even shut off her water supply and only turned it on every few days to flush the toilets.
“I knew she needed help and I knew she wasn’t going to ask for it,” Kinney told CNN.
So Kinney began by tidying up around the house and yard for free. Then he launched a Facebook fundraiser titled “Nice old lady needs help.” His goal was to get the entire community involved in the house’s upkeep.
Kinney has raised over $107,270 to repair Scott’s house. Skilled professionals volunteered their services. Local restaurants donated meals to those working on the house.
Together, they put in a new electrical system, plumbing system, roof, windows, insulation, paint, back porch, patio and grass in Scott’s backyard.
Kinney wants to keep the group, which he calls ‘Gloria’s Gladiators’, going. He even hopes to expand it to help elderly residents around the country. So Kinney created a Facebook page to rally professional tradesmen and volunteers beyond Massachusetts to his cause.
“The people who come just to donate their time – they just walk up and say, ‘What do you need, what can I do?’,” Scott told WHDH. “I’m so so grateful, I will always be grateful.”