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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    ‘Home Makeover’ has student help

    Every week thousands of viewers watch ABC’s award winning show “”Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,”” this week some UA students got their hands dirty as Ty Pennington and the crew came to Tucson.

    Drew Miller, Pima Hall president and a pre-computer science sophomore, said he received a call from one of the producers of the show, asking if he could gather up any volunteers to help move the family out of their home before it was scheduled for demolition.

    “”I said ‘Sure, no problem,’ put my feelers out, called around, and got about 40 people to volunteer,”” Miller said.

    “”Extreme Makeover: Home Edition”” travels around the country, rebuilding homes for families who deserve a new start. Many families live in houses that are physically dangerous, according to the show’s Web site.

    “”All of the volunteers and the community really did come together,”” pre-business sophomore Amal Elhag said, “”just to have the opportunity to volunteer was amazing, and for a good cause.””

    The Bell family was living in a house about 15 minutes away from campus that was growing black mold in the ceiling. Lizzie Bell, their 14-year-old daughter, has a blood disease which causes her to need two blood transfusions every month to survive, Miller said.

    Lizzie Bell actively participates in blood drives with the Red Cross.

    “”That’s what prompted the whole makeover thing,”” Miller said. “”Lizzie has just done so much for the Red Cross and raising blood (bank stores), which she indirectly needs too.””

    He said, the house itself was sinking into the ground and the bathroom was unusable. The Bell family had been trying to remodel it but had gotten too overwhelmed and had to stop.

    The new house was built with the help of a company called Mold Proof Lumber so the family will never have mold problems again, he said.

    The group of volunteers from UA helped move out the family’s belongings from their original house before demolition could take place.

    “”We were helping clean out the little girls’ rooms and we got to see little pieces of their lives,”” biology sophomore Karissa Woods said, “” We were part of something a lot bigger.””

    Elhag said the event was about more than simply rebuilding a family’s home.

    “”Why not be a part of something this huge in Tucson,”” said Elhag, “”I wanted to help out the family and this was the best way I could.””

    The revealing of the new house took place Tuesday and the show is scheduled to air March 22 on ABC.

    Miller, who not only helped with the move-out but worked at the house for several days, said he loved being able to give back to the community.

    “”I love being able to do something selfless for others that in the end you can look back and say ‘This is a mark I made on the world, I helped build this house,'”” Miller said.

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