The 2008 financial crisis was devastating for a lot of neighborhoods across America and many have yet to recover. The Sherman Park neighborhood in urban Milwaukee, Wisconsin however is moving in the right direction. Its members are taking action.
Abandoned homes that are in a state of disrepair are fixed up and resold. Mount Calvary Lutheran Church and School, Milwaukee, Wisconsin is living out their mission of “Bringing Christ’s Hope to the Heart of the City for 90 Years” by helping renovate these homes in the neighborhood. Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) is blessed to support this congregation in their mission and ministry.
These neighborhood improvement projects require many hearts and hands to join together. Not only are boarded-up homes and foreclosed properties cleaned up, new community members are able to move in with a commitment to stay for a period of time. “Mount Calvary has partnered with the Lutheran Church Extension Fund and Milwaukee Rising to improve our neighborhood,” said Pastor Dan Czaplewski. “The loan that Mount Calvary secured through LCEF is at work rehabilitating a duplex just two blocks north of the church. We have adopted this house and it will be on the market soon. Loan funds put a new roof on the house, replaced plumbing, redesigned both kitchens, and funded extensive exterior repair. Bob Gunn is the “foreman” on this project which employs local men, some who are working to rebuild their lives after being incarcerated.”
Generally these properties are gifted to Milwaukee Rising. The homes are in a horrible state of disrepair; they can be abandoned for one, two or three years. Pipes and more need to be completely replaced. There’s a great expense to repair the damage. Flippers not interested in Sherman Park so Milwaukee Rising fixes these up and sells them at a marginal profit to be put back into the next project.