Children's Home gets 'extreme makeover'

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By Jesef Williams

The Lancaster Children's Home is the beneficiary of what has become an annual project of Comporium Communications.

On Thursday, Comporium employees built a chapel, a picnic shelter and two storage buildings at the Children's Home, which provides safe housing for youth who've endured parental mistreatment or other forms of distress.

The project, dubbed the "Extreme Home Makeover," after the popular TV show, is in its third year.

Comporium built the structures for free. The Children's Home provided the supplies, which were received through community donations.

The storage buildings sit behind the boys home and girls home and will store donated clothing and supplies. The picnic area is behind the girl's home; the chapel sits in between the two homes.

Bill Geddings, a facilities manager at Comporium, said more than 100 people have participated in "Extreme Home Makeover" each year.

Nearly 150 Comporium employees signed up to volunteer Thursday.

Those at the site divided into teams and had friendly competitions to see who could do the best job.

"It's great," Geddings said. "We get excited about it."

Crews also installed two new outdoor grills, repainted the buildings and renovated the bedrooms and bathrooms, said Eddie Craig, a Comporium senior inventory contract specialist.

Melanie Harper, the Children's Home administrative assistant, said the supplies and labor would have cost the agency between $40,000 and $50,000.

She said the Children's Home was ecstatic to learn it had been selected for this year's makeover.

Rock Hill's Worthy Boys and Girls Camp and the York Place Episcopal Church Home for Children received the services the last two years.

"It'll make it feel more like a home rather than an institution," Harper said of the work Comporium crews did. "The more at home they (the boys and girls) feel, the more relaxed they'll be."

Contact reporter Jesef Williams at jwilliams@thelancasternews.com or at 283-1152