The Impact Project and Rumble Ponies team up for first project in Afton

Cameron Turner Photo

AFTON – A normal day for anyone usually consists of an alarm clock coupled with a cup of coffee and maybe a brisk walk to the car to start it and head to work.

The simple task of getting out of bed and being able to go outside and check the mail, get to garden to do some weeding – having the freedom to do what we chose with our 24 hours is something many people take for granted.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the case for a 70-year old widow in Afton, New York.

Ginny Nelson has been dealing with two bad knees, falling on ice some four or five times in the past year – all while trying to maneuver a rickety old porch on her trailer home in Afton. 

“My job is to coordinate and facilitate all of these volunteers. It is a lot, we are landscaping, excavating, framing, railing, the whole deal. The goal, what we are providing here today, is somebody can’t get out of their own home. We are providing them with a service to satisfy a basic need,” said James Willard, Executive Director at The Impact Project. “Fulfilling that and making a difference, making an impact on someone’s life as well as the people here at the same time. To accomplish that is to do it all in one day, in a matter of hours, everyone hands on deck. Not only is the homeowner happy, but everyone here feels a sense of accomplishment. Specifically in this case, the whole trailer park sees this all go down in a matter of hours. We call it the Bermuda Triangle – homeowner, volunteers and neighborhood – impact on all sides. That is what we are trying to achieve.”

Things recently came to a unsustainable situation when Nelson fell and broke one of her legs.

“It is overwhelming. I didn’t expect everything they have done. It has just been overwhelming. I am so thankful for everything. I have stayed black and blue, I slipped and fell on my old porch four or five times,” said Nelson. “I got a simple estimate and it was just more than I could afford. I went to the Office for the Aging and they gave me a list of people to contact, but because I don’t own the land, no one would help me. So they directed me to get in touch with The Impact Project, I did it all online.”

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