Shelter is one of the most basic needs, but is often one of the most costly to have, resulting in many individuals facing homelessness. As an organization dealing in building (arguably) the most important part of buildings, National Women in Roofing sought to be a part of the solution.
On June 6, Bliss Roofing in Clackamas, Ore., partnered with the NWiR Oregon Council and Home Building Foundation to reroof the Project Homeless Connect Washington County building. Home Building Foundation facilitates the construction or renovation of housing for the temporarily homeless, so as part of that mission, it coordinated the restoration efforts of the Project Homeless Connect building, which aids those experiencing homelessness.
To keep costs down for the nonprofit, NWiR donated labor and $35,000 in materials to replace the roof, said Stephanie Baird, general manager at Bliss Roofing and chair of the community outreach committee for the NWiR Oregon Council.
“Instead of complaining about the homeless population, we like to be part of the solution instead of part of the problem,” she said. “The goals and missions of National Women in Roofing is to help women or families, so this supports all our pillars.”
Bliss Roofing showed up in force to help with the project, which wrapped up on Thursday morning. Baird said the project was originally intended to last for a day or two, but crews had to re-evaluate after discovering vast amounts of dry rot.
“They needed a roof at least 15 years ago,” she said. “It had two layers, it had shiplap … we had to replace everything. We had to replace rafters. And we are so proud and so honored to have been able to do this for the Home Building Foundation.”
The timing of the event ended up being serendipitous. June 4-10 is the National Roofing Contractors Association’s National Roofing Week, an annual event recognizing and celebrating the roofing industry. This year, the theme for June 6 of National Roofing Week was charitable projects – the same day NWiR and crewmembers began the project.
“It’s like the stars aligned, and it was an accident, I swear,” Baird said with a laugh.
Those in the roofing industry shouldn’t be surprised to see Baird involved with the project. Earlier this year, NWiR presented her its 2023 WORLD Award Veteran recognition, in part for her philanthropic and volunteer work. She is a founding member of NWiR and a past member of its national board of directors. She is also the former council chair of the NWiR Oregon Council.
Along with Bliss Roofing, other companies that took part included Owens Corning, Dealer Supply, Stalcup, AA Rite-Way Roofing, Solid Roofing, Raindrop Roofing NW, and Malarkey Roofing Products.
In addition to the roof, the $200,000 project included modernizing and enlarging the bathrooms and laundry areas, a new fence, updating appliances, improving accessibility and installing a wheelchair ramp.