GOLDEN, Colo. (KDVR) – A local nonprofit that has helped hundreds of single mothers in Colorado is calling on the community to support a great cause. Hands of the Carpenter has provided reliable and affordable vehicles to women in need and now they need donations and volunteers.
Most of the cars in the organization’s parking lot are donated and being repaired for a single mom trying to balance kids, work and getting from point A to point B. Rose Paz told FOX31 on Wednesday that she was driving stress-free for the first time.
“It’s life changing,” Paz said. “It was thrilling, like a dream come true, to be put in a car that is going to be reliable and to know that this company is going to embrace you in a way no one else can.”
Paz is one of hundreds of people who have received a helping hand from Hands of the Carpenter. Paz is a mother of three and has said for years that she balances multiple jobs to support her family and struggles with an unreliable car. Paz shared that she drained her savings for repairs, was often misled at auto repair shops and overcharged, and even learned from YouTube about trying to fix his own vehicle.
“It’s very difficult,” Paz explained. “If you don’t have it, that means you can’t go to the store, you can’t go to the doctor, you can’t go to work.”
Then she found out about the organization through Nextdoor and went to Golden to find out more. For nearly two decades, the nonprofit organization has provided single mothers with auto repairs, vehicles, maintenance, and automotive education.
“Honestly, I don’t know what I would have done if I hadn’t found this program,” Paz said. “I probably would have lost my job.”
Dan Georgopulos, founder and CEO of Hands of the Carpenter, told FOX31 that he will continue to support his community and wants to encourage others to get involved. He says his passion is helping and seeing the faces of women and children light up, and that’s what keeps him going.
“To see one of the kids excited and inside the car because he doesn’t have to take the bus for two hours every day to work and school every day, or the woman who is about to lose her job because she didn’t have a reliable car; it’s tearful for sure,” Georgopulos said.
The organization is managed with a family culture. Georgopulos said they work tirelessly to fix everything from a cracked windshield to rebuilding a transmission, with their partners, for a third of the cost, saving these families a lot of money. money that can be spent on essentials like groceries and housing.
“When something goes wrong with a car, it can cost a mother her job and her house, and eventually she ends up on the streets,” Georgopulos said. “The biggest hurdle we can help them overcome is transportation.”
He added that the COVID-19 pandemic has created a lot of unemployment and the surge in Colorado’s housing market has increased the need for many women. To meet the high demand, the organization is expanding to a second location in Aurora, which means more cars donated and more volunteers donated.
“It’s definitely worth a smile and a hug,” Georgopulos told FOX31.
Useful to help lighten the load for mothers carrying a full load alone. Last year alone, Hands for the Carpenter served 267 women, and this year that number is expected to grow to well over 400.
The Aurora location is expected to open in late April. If you wish to donate a car, four-door sedans, minivans and small SUVs are encouraged, but not limited.
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