NEW LONDON, Wis. (WFRV) – Greater Fox Cities Habitat for Humanity kicked off the annual “Rock The Block” neighborhood revitalization project in New London. First home on the list of 33, Michael and Karen Hidde. The Hiddle Family has lived in New London for over a decade and their home was in major need of help. “It has allowed us to not only repair the roof, but we are able to replace all of the siding, all of the windows, and we’ve even got new gutters,” says Karen Hidde.
Karen and her husband Mike have lived in their home for over a decade with their three children. Two of the children have special needs. “They were born with a genetic disorder the Argininosuccinic aciduria, called ASA for short, which makes it so their bodies can’t break down protein,” explains Hidde. The condition leads to dangerous levels of ammonia buildup. With the focus on their children, the house upkeep was last on the priority list.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to come here, the beautiful city of New London, and offer our services,” says John Weyenberg, CEO of Greater Fox Cities Habitat for Humanity. “Rock The Block” has been helping communities for 6 years. “This week, we are focused here in New London and our goal is to help improve the quality of life for all the residents who live here,” adds Weyenberg.
Reportedly, neighborhoods that have hosted “Rock The Block” have seen a decrease in crime and ordinance complaints. “In the end, it truly brings down the crime activity and brings our community to a next standard,” says Mark Herter, Mayor of New London. Habitat will also rehabilitate local parks as well.
All chapters of Habitat for Humanity are driven by volunteers. John Flemyng has been a volunteer for about a year and a half. He says he wanted to find something to do, after retired from working, to make a difference. “Especially on a day like this, to join with some of my fellow members of the senior crew for Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity, along with the volunteers from New London here, I can already see a huge improvement in this property,” explains Flemyng.