Family given a new start

April 29, 2008 5:20:58 PM PDT
In Barnegat, New Jersey tonight it's a new way of thinking about the old saying, "charity begins at home". For one family, that is turning out to be true, literally. 13-year-old David Mulvihill watched a crew demolish his home of 11 years this morning. He is autistic, and the house he shared with his mom and 22-year-old brother on Village Drive was destroyed by fire in March 2007.

"I had just went and picked him up from school and I came home and the house was on fire," said David's mother Ellen.

The family lost everything - clothes, furniture, the keyboard and guitar that helped David focus, the fenced in yard that kept him safe from his autistic misunderstanding of boundaries. The family couldn't recover.

The family moved to a small apartment Ellen Mulvihill can barely afford as a single mom on her disability income. She considered welfare until Wheels for Charity offered to coordinate a volunteer effort to build and donate a home to her family. Individuals and contractors are donating money, time and talent.

"Put together a modular home for her. So instead of building from scratch, what we're going to do is take everything down here, put a new foundation up and drop a new home on top," explains Ed Stewart from Wheels for Charity.

The new digs may be the perfect prescription to help David settle back into a healthy routine. It's a reprieve from feeling like they couldn't get through tomorrow.

Once the foundation is demolished and a new one laid, the modular home will be brought over. And if all goes well, the Mulvihills will be able to move into their new donated home sometime this summer.


Load Comments