- Associated Press - Friday, June 3, 2016

FORT DODGE, Iowa (AP) - The Habitat for Humanity chapter that covers Webster and Humboldt counties is adding another service on top of building homes for people in need: installing wheelchair ramps.

Executive director Howard Hartman of the Twin Rivers chapter told The Messenger (https://bit.ly/1Xo2xDT ) that ever since he arrived in the area in 2008, he’s noticed the need for the ramps. The new service begins this month.

“There’s a need for it and we’re trying to fill that need,” he said.

People who will be getting ramps will be asked to provide “sweat equity” in return. Hartman says that can be done through helping with the installation or through other methods, such as working at the organization’s store or providing lunch for construction volunteers.

For those who are interested, Hartman said there’s an application process followed by a visit from the group to determine what kind of ramp needs to be built.

“Some of them are a straight shot, some of them have to have a landing and turn into the driveway,” he said. “A building permit might be in question.”

The chapter also offers interest-free loans to pay off the cost of materials and permits. Hartman said the payments may be as little as $20 to $25 a month.

More volunteers will also be needed to help with construction as Hartman anticipates the chapter will be installing multiple ramps.

“They could be anyone that has a basic knowledge of construction or just building a wheelchair ramp,” he said. “They could be retired, they could be working for a construction company. It doesn’t really matter.”

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Information from: The Messenger, https://www.messengernews.net


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