FOX8/WGHP telethon raises over $122,000 for hurricane victims – help still needed

University of Virginia students spend spring break helping nonprofit with home repairs

GREENSBORO, N.C. -- It's spring break, but instead of getting their sun on a beach, eleven University of Virginia college students are getting their sun on a roof in High Point

“We`re with an organization called Chi Alpha,” said Val Hornsby, a freshman at the University of Virginia. “It's a Christian organization on the grounds and we just really wanted to help people out.”

They're volunteering with Community Housing Solutions, a small non-profit that serves Guilford County with home repairs at a reduced cost to keep people -- many of whom are elderly or disabled -- in their homes.

Home ownership is so important to our community,” said Gene Brown, president and executive director of Community Housing Solutions. “It allows families to have a safe and warm place to live, but it also helps to really stabilize neighborhoods.”

Brown says the volunteers are the secret ingredient to the organization's success.

“I've talked to homeowners who have said the experience they had through the repairs helps to restore hope and dignity and it really inspires relationships with others where people who wouldn`t have met before have the opportunity to work and serve and get to know one another.”

Some volunteer on just one project, but others are regulars like John Setchfield's group from Emerywood Baptist Church who help out monthly.

“You don't have to have skills, you just have to have an ability to give of yourself and a little time, and that`s all it takes,” Setchfield said.

Over the past 12 years, Community Housing Solutions has invested over $5 million in preserving home ownership for low-income families in Guilford County, and completed about 950 projects.

To learn more about Community Housing Solutions, click here.