WMBD/WYZZ TV - PEORIA -- Blessed is the only word Annie Carter could think of when close to 50 volunteers took over her home to change her life.
She says, "It's overwhelming to know there are still people out there who care about others."
Volunteers from Rebuilding Peoria are revamping and revitalizing the home of Annie and Pearthur Carter, a house they've called home for 20 years and where they raised seven children. Carter says the past four years have gotten pretty hard for them with her husband's health fading.
"His medication and everything has cleaned us out so I couldn't afford to get the repairs done."
But now those repairs are in the hands of volunteers. Rick Brown with Rebuilding Peoria says, "The biggest issues we saw was the fact that we had broken windows, the bathroom had real major issues with plumbing, it was really a challenge to say let's take the highest priority. We want to make sure things are safe for the homeowner as well as make things look a lot better."
And for one volunteer this project really hit home. Forty years ago, Ernie Rech called the house in the 2100 block of Antoinette Street home.
He says, "I was shocked! Out of all the houses they do in the whole area, to find my house, my old house I lived in, so I had to help no doubt about that."
When Carter found out one of the volunteers used to live in her home she said, "It was real weird! There were things his grandmother or mother left in the closet that I had to show him."
So with the help of an old tenant and dozens of volunteers, the Carters will soon feel like they're living in a brand new home.
Rebuilding Peoria will finish the repairs on Saturday the 25th. The house on Antoinette Street is one of two houses being sponsored by the Caterpillar Foundation. Altogether, Rebuilding Peoria is remodeling 15 homes this year.