Office of Neighborhood Development Services Improving Homes - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Office of Neighborhood Development Services Improves Hundreds of Yakima Homes in 2013

Posted: Updated:
The Office of Neighborhood Development Services helps seniors or low income families with home repairs, and cleans up eyesores around the city. The Office of Neighborhood Development Services helps seniors or low income families with home repairs, and cleans up eyesores around the city.

YAKIMA, WA - It's often referred to as one of Yakima's hidden gems. The Office of Neighborhood Development Services helps seniors or low income families with home repairs, and cleans up eyesores around the city.

Going from disaster to feeling like he won the lotto. That's the way Frank Murray describes his phone call with Office of Neighborhood Development Services (ONDS).

"Couple weeks ago when the big winds came, I lost about half my roof," said Murray. "No money. No way to fix it."

In 2013, ONDS helped more than 100 seniors like Frank with emergency or regular home repairs, free of charge.

"I've got a new roof," said Murray. "It's amazing."

Manager Archie Matthews said ONDS depends on about $1.2 million in federal funds a year. They also rely on a whole lot of dedicated volunteers. Not only do they help seniors with housing repairs, but the organization also helps clean up illegal dump sites and graffiti.

"We are constantly fighting graffiti," said Matthews. "If graffiti would just stop. If we could get the kids and the taggers to understand how much they're costing us as a community."

Volunteers racked up hours painting over graffiti found in the city. In 2013, they used nearly 700 gallons of paint to go over more than 12,500 different locations of graffiti.

Matthews said the only way ONDS can keep producing this amount of work in the future is through volunteers. But unfortunately, volunteer numbers have been declining over the past several years.

"We use to get 14,000-15,000 volunteer hours a year, and that's kind of slipped down to about 12,000," said Matthews. "I don't know what's generating that."

Matthews said in 2013, they painted 26 homes with volunteers. However, 15 years ago, before ONDS even started using volunteers, they could only get to five homes a year.

If you would like to volunteer with ONDS, you can stop by their Yakima office located on the corner of 8th Street and Walnut.

  • Regional NewsMore>>

  • Benton-Franklin Red Cross Sends Emergency Response Vehicle For Fire Relief

    Benton-Franklin Red Cross Sends Emergency Response Vehicle For Fire Relief

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 10:37 PM EDT2014-07-23 02:37:20 GMT
    The Benton-Franklin Chapter of Red Cross sent out one of their emergency response vehicles to help those displaced by the wildfires.>>
    The Benton-Franklin Chapter of Red Cross sent out one of their emergency response vehicles to help those displaced by the wildfires.>>
  • Prevent house fires with defensible space!

    Prevent house fires with defensible space!

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 5:14 PM EDT2014-07-22 21:14:44 GMT
    KHQ.COM - In these extremely challenging weather conditions, State Fire Marshal Chuck Duffy is urging residents to inspect and maintain the defensible space around their homes. Defensible space can dramatically increase your home’s chances of surviving a disastrous wildfire, and can be accomplished through careful planning and vegetation management.>>
    KHQ.COM - In these extremely challenging weather conditions, State Fire Marshal Chuck Duffy is urging residents to inspect and maintain the defensible space around their homes. Defensible space can dramatically increase your home’s chances of surviving a disastrous wildfire, and can be accomplished through careful planning and vegetation management.>>
  • Government selling home connected to Henrikson

    Government selling home connected to Henrikson

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 12:05 PM EDT2014-07-22 16:05:36 GMT
    BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - The U.S. attorney's office plans to sell a home connected to a man who has been questioned in an alleged murder-for-hire scheme in Spokane, Washington, and is awaiting trial on weapons charges in North Dakota. The case centers on James Henrikson, who had business dealings in North Dakota's oil patch with a man who was killed by an intruder in his Spokane home.>>
    BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - The U.S. attorney's office plans to sell a home connected to a man who has been questioned in an alleged murder-for-hire scheme in Spokane, Washington, and is awaiting trial on weapons charges in North Dakota. The case centers on James Henrikson, who had business dealings in North Dakota's oil patch with a man who was killed by an intruder in his Spokane home.>>