INDIANAPOLIS — From replacing siding on homes, to improving accessibility, Neighborlink Indianapolis is seeing an increase in the need for their services.
"The need for our clientele is growing and growing," Neighborlink Project Coordinator Wes Trapp said.
NeighborLink Indianapolis provides free home repairs for homeowners who are 62-years-old or older, or have a disability living in Marion County at or below 150% of the federal poverty level.
"A lot of times, when they get citations, or they just can't manage their house, they have no option besides either to leave or they're forced to leave," Trapp said.
In 2022, Neighborlink completed more than 914 home projects compared to 527 the year before.
The non-profit organization partners with Indiana Construction Roundtable Foundation to help tackle large projects.
WRTV met participants in ICRF's BY Bootcamp Training program out in the Fountain Square neighborhood where they were helping replace siding on a home.
"It's one of the best experiences of my life so far," Greg Martin said.
Martin is hoping to start his own business using the skills he's learning.
"I'm from Indianapolis and my parents inherited homes and they were in disrepair." Martin said. "Some of them started getting violations, so I wanted to contribute and look at what are some of the things that I can do to help."
The BY Bootcamp Training Martin is taking part in is a new program. Participants meet for three or four weeks Monday-Friday. They complete training towards NCCER Core and OSHA certifications.
The traditional BY Training Program is a 9-week training course that meets twice a week with the same curriculum.
"These guys really care and they're really trying to help people and trying to just improve Marion County, you know they are really trying to face lift Indy," Martin said.
The ultimate goal of the program is to help fill high demand construction jobs. According to ICRF, it's believed that the construction workforce in Indiana will need to grow to 275,000 workers by 2026 - that's a need of about 164,000 workers.
ICRF anticipates hosting more than 20 BY Training Classes across the state in 2024. So far, in 2023, ICRF has served more than 400 Indiana residents through the BY Training Programs.
The deadline to register for the final BY Bootcamp Trainingof the year hosted at Southeast Community Services is October 30th at 8:30 a.m.
As the need for repairs continues to grow, Neighborlink Indianapolis also needs volunteers year round for projects that aren't as complex like yard work or painting.
On Saturday October 28th, the organization needs more than 100 volunteers for the 2023 Fall Repair Fest.
The focus is on Indy's northeast side where they hope to help as many homeowners as possible in one day.