February 3, 2020 -Renovation work has been completed on a HomeAid Houston project for Agape Development. HomeAid, a 501 c 3 charity of the Greater Houston Builders Association (GHBA), partnered with custom builder and GHBA member Sandcastle Homes, to make improvements to Paris House, a 950 sq. ft. house that was converted into an office and counseling center for Agape Development. The enhancements will provide a more modern space for day- to- day operations and provide a place for work placement assistance and counseling for the young men and women working with Agape.
Sandcastle Homes, led by Nicole Keown and assisted by Steven Speer, project manager spearheaded the work as part of their commitment to improving the lives of young men and women in the Third Ward. Keown and Speer began by handling much of the demolition themselves as they removed the exterior siding, gutted the interior, and loaded trash in preparation for the upcoming improvements.
Additional work included removal of deteriorated materials inside and outside of the building for full restoration; replacing windows and drywall, installation of paneling, new trim, and interior doors and cabinets, refinishing the interiors of a bathroom, and breakroom, providing fixture replacements and new countertops. Work also included installing new flooring, new paint and hardware, and replacing the fencing on the property.
Agape identifies existing properties that have in some cases, been abandoned or are in total disrepair and refurbishes them. The houses provide stable housing for young adults who are in crisis or as in the Paris House, a place for education and life skills training. At the same time, these renovated houses revitalize the community.
With its location within Houston’s historic Third Ward, the faith-based Agape Development’s Gateway Houses are part of a residential program to help 18-25-year-olds make the transition to healthy adulthood by assisting with housing, utilities, food, and transportation while providing counseling, job preparation, and guidance in continued education.
“I really enjoyed the project and the overall outcome of the building,” said Keown. “This was one of the rare opportunities where I could roll up my sleeves and do some of the work myself. Steven Speer and I were inspired by the kids we saw who were being helped through Agape. We were proud to work on this from the Sandcastle Home side and to represent HomeAid and their mission.”
The following were companies that donated to the renovations. EC Contractors provided sheetrock, paint, exterior siding, and window replacement. Sandcastle Homes provided interior demolition. Juan Hurtado donated carpentry. Houston Carpet Service provided the flooring. Western Pacific donated building materials. Other vendors included Kent Moore Cabinets; Rolando Delgado Landscaping; Coastal Plumbing and Aztec Glass and Mirror.