Wednesday, April 27, 2005

'Home with a Heart' effort shows valley's good soul

In these uncertain times when negative stories seem to dominate our television and wonderful human interest stories about good people doing good things seem to fall into the cracks - right after the weather and sports - it has been incredibly rewarding to witness so many of our valley businesses stepping up for a common good.

We have been very active in this valley for many, many years. Our company, Family Development, has experienced unprecedented success - building homes for families all over the valley. We have been so grateful to our homeowners. Their expression of confidence in our mission has been humbling.

When we named our new home building company, we knew that the name we chose carried with it a big responsibility. We needed to build homes that families could be proud to call their own. We needed to select locations that would maintain their quality for years to come, and we needed to provide caring customer service. In other words, we were going to build homes as if we were building them for our own families. We believed that the word "family" would guide us, and if we were fortunate enough to be successful, we would find ways to give something back to the community.

About a year ago, the idea came to us; "Home with a Heart" was born and now the time has finally arrived. On Friday, May 20 to Monday, May 23, with a great deal of help from volunteers, we will be orchestrating a four-day, 'round-the-clock home construction, from foundation to completion at our Shadow Ranch community in north Indio.

On Monday, when the home is complete, we will donate all of the proceeds from the sale of the home, a minimum of $300,000, to two local nonprofit organizations. We selected the Barbara Sinatra Children's Center and the Family YMCA of the Desert because they do so much for families and children in the valley.

We hoped that we could get people and businesses to help us with the home construction, but we never expected the outpouring of participation that we have received.

The Coachella Valley definitely has a heart for helping others. It started with our subcontractors readily volunteering their time and services and now we have an extended family of over 40 businesses throughout the valley taking part. Local restaurants are donating food, local entertainers are donating their talent; we even have local physical therapists coming out to keep the workers loose and in shape.

In addition, many of our country's finest celebrities have joined the cause. Kirk Douglas, Gerald Ford, Yogi Berra, Jerry Vale, Robert Wagner, Tony Danza and so many more have graciously donated personalized artwork.

As each day passes, bringing us closer and closer to the event, more an more people are coming aboard.

It is our hope that valley residents will come out during the event to witness what can happen when a lot of people come together for a common good. We hope the event proves to be exciting and inspirational.

We want to offer a "sincere thank you" to the community for all their support in the last couple of years and a special thanks to those who will be participating during the four-day construction event. Your enthusiasm for "Home with a Heart" says something great about what can be accomplished when a community works together to make a difference.

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