Emma Wood

Emma Wood (81) has lived in her house in South Park for 50 years. Now, she’s about to get a new one. Hurricane Harvey devastated Ms. Wood’s home and made it difficult for her to continue with her way of life. “All [the bedrooms] had water in them,” Wood explains, and almost every room saw damages. Despite turning to many different organizations, no one could get Ms. Wood the help she needed. Then she learned about Build it Forward Houston.

Now, Ms. Wood will get a newly constructed, elevated home, where she and her son can live safely, without worrying about future flooding. Soon, she’ll be able to get back to the parts of life she enjoys, like caring for the elderly and baking for her church community. “You have to be patient, but stick with it,” says Wood. Her patience, strength, and optimism have been noted by all the people working with her throughout this reconstruction process.

Demolition on Ms. Wood’s home began July 31, and construction was completed on August 23. Hers is among the first group of houses to be reconstructed through the Homeowner’s Assistance Program (HoAP), which began accepting applications earlier this year. Sitting down in her home for the first time, Ms. Wood looks around and says, “I never thought I’d get a house like this at my age…I’m so proud of me – so proud of everybody.” We wish Ms. Woods and her family well in their new home! If your home was damaged during Hurricane Harvey, you may qualify for similar assistance. To start, go to recovery.houstontx.gov and fill out the Harvey Recovery Survey.