Since our work began after the Redwood Complex Fire, we have often said that we are building the plane while flying it. Disaster recovery is a new role to many involved in Mendocino-ROC, and each phase has offered up new opportunities to learn. Our greatest goal throughout the process has been to get fire survivors back home – whether that means into a long-term rental, purchasing a house, or rebuilding. Over this spring we realized the need to develop multiple building tracks to help survivors, given the construction time required to complete a single home. We are pleased to share that we now have more options in place.
A new nonprofit, Rebuilding Now, Inc. spearheaded by Mendocino-ROC case manager Jon Kennedy has taken on the role of building homes at cost for survivors while (re)training the local workforce. Kennedy, after spending many days (and likely nights) talking survivors through their rebuilding needs, realized a new way he could help serve the community and get more survivors back home. Hiring fire survivors to learn the trade from a skilled journeyman, Kennedy completed his first home this spring. He now has three additional homes in various stages of construction.