For Leon and Priscille Boucher of Berlin, New Hampshire, a new roof meant they could use their pots and pans for cooking rather than collecting the water dripping from the ceiling. United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development funded roof rehabilitation, but realized the Boucher family home of over 47 years needed more than the Boucher’s were asking for.
A $7,500 USDA Rural Development 504 Home Repair Grant funded the new roof, but a flood of partner donations and volunteer efforts from Tri-County Community Action Program, Public Service New Hampshire Energy Efficiency Services, New Hampshire Housing and Community Contact Division, Sherwin Williams, Caron Building Center, Rockingham Electric and Local Contractor Jim Lavertue resulted in energy-saving insulation installation, safer, updated wiring to replace the existing knob-and-tube system, rehabilitation work on two dilapidated porches, a new coat of paint on outdoor furniture, a planted vegetable garden and a freshly cut lawn for Leon and Priscille.
Without the partnerships founded in this life changing project the Boucher’s fear of electrical fire would still linger, their winter heating costs would soar again come December. USDA Rural Development can fund roof repairs, but the partnerships Rural Development builds with rural communities are what rebuild porches, paint lawn furniture and plant gardens.
The Boucher’s long-time family house is once again a home they can not only live in, but enjoy for the rest of their lives.