Rebuilding Together Modifies Saratoga Home for Beloved Neighbor
SARATOGA SPRINGS – It’s the season of giving and the Saratoga Springs community is giving one of its neighbors the gift of a lifetime – a newly modified home.
Mike Shpur, of Saratoga Springs, suffered a severe spinal cord injury in late June. He is now a quadriplegic. After five weeks in the Intensive Care Unit at Albany Medical Center, Shpur was moved to Sunnyview Rehabilitation Hospital, where is receiving intensive therapy. While Shpur’s family and friends say he’s receiving excellent care, there truly is no place like home.
Rebuilding Together Saratoga County joined forces with Shpur’s family, friends and neighbors to completely modify the home he shares with his wife, Cindy. The home is now ready and equipped to welcome him just in time for Christmas.
“The goal was to get him home, but he needed to have modifications to his home,” said Michelle Larkin, executive director of Rebuilding Together Saratoga County. “He’s going to be in a large chair, so he needed a wide, roll-in shower.”
But the modifications didn’t stop there. Crews also remodeled toilets and sinks, widened doorways, installed new flooring and constructed ramps to get Shpur in and out of the house.
“Mike was part of the golfing community and it was interesting because I had a lot of people calling me about him,” said Larkin. “People immediately reached out to Rebuilding Together Saratoga County to try to do something for him, which I thought was pretty cool.”
Rebuilding Together heard of Shpur’s story in early October and was able to gather enough volunteers, donors and contractors to assist with the project, despite the hustle and bustle of the holiday season.
“Being that it was the end of the year, budgets were already made; but everybody was on the same page and everybody wanted to do something,” said Larkin. “We also had help from a family who cares a lot about their community and felt particularly touched by this story.”
Shpur’s home remodel was one of the many projects Rebuilding Together Saratoga County completed throughout the year. The group assisted over 107 households and non-profit organizations in 2014 with help from over 1,000 volunteers. Larkin says Shpur’s project is an example of the good work that is possible when the community comes together.
“The community did rally to help this family,” said Larkin. “It’s a story that touches everybody because it was so out of the blue; it could happen to anybody. The folks who volunteer and work with us are amazing people because they’re helping strangers. One of our homeowners once said to me, ‘They came as strangers and left as friends,’ and that’s what we’re all about.”
To volunteer or to donate to Shpur’s project or any other project Rebuilding Together Saratoga County is working on, visit their website at www.rtsaratoga.org