Saint John’s Program for Real Change is known for inspiring almost magical, personal transformations within the women and children who temporarily call its facilities “home.” Living and learning in the safe and nurturing environment of the sanctuary buildings and grounds, Saint John’s Program participants enjoy the support they need to rebuild and transition their lives. Personal improvement is celebrated, positively ongoing and, at its best, generational. These wonderful life-affirming impacts transcend the Program itself and the residents.
Kevin Takeda is a building industry veteran and construction professional with Lennar. Through a unique partnership initiated by HomeAid Sacramento, Lennar and Saint John’s, Kevin volunteered to serve as Project Manager on the construction of the recently completed Saint John’s facilities expansion.
In his 21 years with Lennar, Kevin has contributed to multiple shelter housing construction and renovation projects in partnership with HomeAid. The Saint John’s Program expansion is special to him: “I grew up just south of here,” says Kevin. “To see the women and families who are taken in at the shelter, the children playing, safe and happy— it really inspired us to make this project happen.”
Active construction on the expansion began in January of 2017. At the time, the total new facilities costs, labor and materials, were estimated at $1,053,879. As planned, roughly 21% of those costs ($212,643) would be covered by in-kind labor, materials and project management. Contributing benefactors included Lennar, HomeAid and a generous, highly-orchestrated team of subcontractors and tradesmen.
As construction progressed throughout spring, Kevin routinely brought both of his sons, ages 17 and 13, by the project site. The Takeda boys even offered hands-on assistance, cleaning up the site and contributing as they could. “It is important that we give back to the community as we can,” says Kevin. “I am grateful for the opportunity to make a difference and to share the good feelings of this progress with my next generation.”
After five months of construction, as the facilities were ready to welcome new residents, Kevin and his team at Lennar and HomeAid, had been able to value-engineer the project costs down to $962,332, while also increasing the in-kind donations to $300,116; over 30% of the overall project costs.
According to Beth Kang, Executive Director of HomeAid Sacramento: “Without this kind of remarkable generosity, many projects like this expansion would not or could not be completed.”
She notes that even after women and children began occupying the new building, HomeAid donated an additional $10,000 for cover external paint for the building. “While a lot of work remains to be done on the issue of homelessness in our region, personal connections like Kevin’s make these contributions even more lasting and meaningful. They continue to inspire our ability to make a difference as we have for over 20 years.”
HomeAid Sacramento is the leading builder and renovator of dignified shelter housing in the Sacramento region. Since 1996, HomeAid has partnered with organizations like Saint John’s Program for Real Change to deliver much-needed projects to benefit emergency and transitionally homeless individuals. (Learn more.) Already, Saint John’s and HomeAid are in discussions regarding future needs in new facilities and improvements.
Blog by Guest Writer Kirk Taber