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Something to build upon

HANAPEPE — There is no better way to know the work Kauai United Way agencies do than to do it yourself, said Peter Wiederoder, of Dow Agrosciences, Friday morning.

Wiederoder had 20 employees of Dow Agrosciences rolling up their sleeves and working alongside Kauai Habitat for Humanity staff in sprucing up the Hanapepe facility and building pre-fab houses for the Eleele Iluna subdivision.

“By bringing the people out and putting in some sweat equity, they have an idea of the kind of work the Kauai United Way agencies go through,” Wiederoder said. “This is a nice way for Dow Agrosciences to launch its own United Way campaign. We’ll also have a breakfast next week where the employees will get to hear of the work being done by other KUW participating agencies.”

Wiederoder said the reason they selected Kauai Habitat for Humanity as beneficiary for its efforts was because it has Dow Agrosciences families who apply for, and are recipients of, Habitat for Humanity homes.

“By coming out to help at the Kauai Habitat for Humanity, we support a worthy community agency, but more importantly, it demonstrates our support for our families and associates,” Wiederoder said.

Milani Pimental, the Kauai Habitat for Humanity development director, said the scope of work being done by Dow volunteers included a “refresher” wall paint job for the ReStore thrift shop and outside weed whacking.

They also put together four pre-fab houses, bringing the total number of ready-to-go homes to 10, the number of lots in the first phase of the Eleele Iluna subdivision.

“John Beniamina, one of the Dow volunteers, was a Habitat recipient of a major home repair project in Kekaha,” Pimental said. “We had to literally gut his home and re-do it from the inside out. Since then, he’s been helping at a lot of the Habitat projects. Today, he is part of the Dow team working to finish the four homes, a two-bedroom, a four-bedroom, and two three-bedroom models.”

Pimental said the people doing the outdoor grooming were also sorely needed.

“We used to have some people come by to do the outdoor maintenance,” Pimental said. “We don’t know what happened to them. They disappeared, so to have the Dow people cut down the overgrowth is definitely appreciated.”

Pimental said Dow Agrosciences is one of the Kauai Habitat partial house sponsors, contributing $15,000 last year.

Pimental said the homes are ready to go, the Kauai Habitat for Humanity is just waiting on permits from the Planning Commission, which has the Eleele Iluna homes on its September agenda.

“It’s just the process,” Pimental said. “We need to get the groundwork approved before they even look at the house permits. But, by having the houses pre-fabricated through the work of Rick Aitkenhead, the Habitat construction head, we’re ready to go once the permits are approved.”

The Kauai United Way launched its 2015 Campaign last week with a goal of $750,000.

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