Sunday, July 28, 2013

HomeMod to the Rescue Once Again

  Above is a recent picture my new balcony, complete with summer flowers and an elevated floor.
                      After the exterior balcony floor was elevated, an interior step was added.

There is a fantastic program here in Chicago available to persons with disabilities, it is called HomeMod. Those of you who have been following my blog for the past couple of years will recall that this HomeMod program has done  work for me in the past couple of years. Two years ago I had my hallway bathroom remodeled, having the bathtub and shower doors removed and a walk in shower or in my case a roll in shower installed.

Last year I had the wall to wall carpeting removed and a wood laminate floor installed in the main living area of my condo. All of the modifications that were done were free of charge, if you qualify for the program, you are allowed up to $10,000.00 per year until age 65 to be used toward an improvement that will make living with your disability and maintaining your independence easier.

When I lost my second leg in December 2010 getting out onto my balcony was nearly impossible. Before the balcony was redone there was a four inch step up to the patio door threshold and a seven inch step down onto the actual balcony. Being a bilateral above knee amputee, steps are always a problem and accessibility to anything with steps is particularly difficult, my balcony was no exception.

I am pleased to say that once again the HomeMod program came to my aid, elevating my balcony floor up to the level of the threshold at the sliding patio doors and installing a two inch step inside allowing me to step up onto the threshold and out onto the balcony. Originally I had helped them design the new balcony with the intention of using my short legs to access the balcony. When the project was complete, I was looking at the way it played out  and I discovered I can also access the balcony using my wheelchair.

Anyone who knows me, knows how much I enjoy being outdoors and being unable to get out on my balcony was very displeasing to me. Now thanks to the homeMod program that is no longer an issue, I can easily get outside either on my short legs or my wheelchair. Yeah!

If you are a Chicago resident living with a physical disability and under the age of 65 you may qualify for this very special and highly appreciated program. There is an application process and they will come out to your house to discuss what modifications can be done and even offer advice about what  can retrofitted in your home to make living a more autonomous life, easier.

The gentleman's name is Mark Nobriga, he is the HomeMod Program Director. He can be reached by phone at 312.743.1523 or emailed at: I do not know the website address, if you call Mr. Nobriga he will be able to direct you through the appropriate steps to obtain an application along with the deadline dates etc.

I do not know if other such programs exist outside of Chicago, I suspect that there are other similar programs however, I do not know exact names or websites. It may be helpful to contact the local People With Disabilities office in your town or city.

Heartfelt thanks to the HomeMod Program for once again making my life a little easier and whole lot more enjoyable.

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