Rock The Block Brings Out 300 Volunteers To Spiff Up Homes In The Set


Staff report

It was all about teamwork in the Allamanda Gardens neighborhood last month when more than 300 volunteers made their way to The Set to spruce up several homes through the “Rock the Block” initiative.

Hosted by Habitat for Humanity of South Palm Beach County, the city of Delray Beach and supported by 11 businesses and service organizations, several homes received fresh coats of paint and new landscaping.

“’Rock the Block’ offers an exhilarating ‘hands-on’ way to experience the impact of volunteerism and philanthropy,” said HFHSPBC Vice President & Chief Development Officer Kari Oeltjen.

Each sponsor donated or raised $2,500 to cover the cost of construction materials, tools, paint and painting equipment and landscaping costs and then brought out their own supporters to transform their actual “Rock the Block” home together as a team while working alongside the homeowner.

“Participating in the transformation of each company’s ‘home of their own’ leaves a lasting impact not just on the homeowner but on also the volunteers who witnessed how their work helped to strengthen a neighborhood and the community-at-large,” Oeltjen said.

Homes were selected with help from the city.  Homeowners range from seniors, veterans, people with disabilities or health issues to families with young children who live in Delray Beach and own their homes. Each homeowner was asked to invest a stipend of $200 toward the revitalization program.

The 2019 “Rock the Block” Presenting Home Sponsors include Team Apple; Bella Homes; CenterState Bank; City of Delray Beach, Neighborhood and Community Services and the Delray Beach CRA ; Habitat Young Professionals; Home Depot Team Depot; Posh Properties; Shamrock Restoration; St. Andrews School; Wayne Automatic Fire Sprinklers, Inc.; Wells Fargo and Vertical Bridge.

“It is great seeing our homeowners, residents, community and business leaders, all here coming together to support an event which enhances a neighborhood home by home and block by block and pleased we partnered once again with Habitat for Humanity of South Palm Beach County,” said Mayor Shelly Petrolia, who noted that this event is a neighborhood clean-up project that has been a City of Delray Beach tradition since 1989. “This event has helped us to work alongside our block captains from the NW and SW Alliance Group, caused us all to forge relationships with the homeowners, the volunteers, staff, the business community non-profit and for-profit alike.”

Petrolia noted that the program was initially called Paint-up Delray and was completely city driven. When the city changed it to Curb Appeal by the Block, it transformed to a community driven event providing landscape enhancements that included irrigation systems and new driveways, ramps as needed, mailboxes and also included Military Veterans families with ADA accessibility needs.

Through the City of Delray Beach, and its Community Redevelopment Agency, thousands of individuals have worked together for the past three decades to paint more than 200 houses for low-income residents.