Ramp allows bingo lover to live at home

AN EASIER ROUTE: Thanks to the efforts of the Council on Aging of Buncombe County, a local woman can use this ramp to stay in her home.
AN EASIER ROUTE: Thanks to the efforts of the Council on Aging of Buncombe County, a local woman can use this ramp to stay in her home. Photo courtesy of the Council on Aging of Buncombe County

Editor’s note: As part of Xpress’ Nonprofit Issue, we asked local nonprofits to share a bright moment of 2017.

The woman on the other end of the phone was frantic. It had been six months since she had welcomed a sweet, vibrant 63-year-old lady into her home. However, the 63-year-old recently had knee surgery and was unable to get up and down stairs. The caller explained her situation: lots of exterior stairs and a stair-shy roommate. Outside agency support was needed to keep the living situation possible.

So I got to work. I made multiple phone calls to agencies willing to help, but because of the oddity of the circumstances, they were unable to assist. However, after a bit more digging and extensive paperwork, I requested funding through the RL Mace Universal Design Institute. Victory!

Grace Collins/Photo courtesy of the Council on Aging of Buncombe County
Grace Collins/Photo courtesy of the Council on Aging of Buncombe County

When it was all said and done, it took about three months, but the end result was well worth it. A beautifully built ramp, 80 feet in total, will effectively keep these two ladies living at home for years to come. Most important, it will allow them to make it to bingo on Thursdays.

As the woman states, “[COA] stepped in when nobody else would and found the answer. I will never be able to thank [them] enough.”

— Grace Collins, service coordinator
for the Council on Aging of Buncombe County

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