Blue Ridge Service Corps Spotlight: Natalie McNally

In August of 2022, we received another great opportunity to once again partner with Blue Ridge Service Corps (BRSC). This year’s partnership allowed us the honor to work with another super star, Natalie McNally. When Natalie joined our team, like many other Corps members, she wasn’t 100% familiar with the Habitat for Humanity ReStores and had never heard of Deconstruction. Our Deconstruction Program is an important concept allowing a team of skilled, detailed oriented, and patient staff members, core volunteers, and BRSC members the opportunity to go into homes and businesses and extract items such as kitchens, closet organizers, interior doors, bathroom vanities, light fixtures, and more. Habitat then brings these items back to the ReStore to sell to the public for a fraction of what these items would normally sell for. This helps keep many usable items out of the landfill, is a very affordable process for both home and business owners, provides donors with a nice itemized tax receipt, and the proceeds from these jobs help support our mission.

Natalie disassembles a cabinet with a hammer and pry bar.

Over the last six months that Natalie has been a part of our Decon team, she has learned how to extract cabinets and granite tops while keeping them intact, disconnect light fixtures and ceiling fans from both the electrical and mounting brackets, disconnect waterlines from sinks and drains, and more. Recently, we worked on a rather small kitchen that allowed Natalie the opportunity to jump in and test what she’s learned. And in just a couple of hours, she had the complete kitchen extracted with very little help.

Natalie stands in a kitchen prior to deconstructing the cabinets and countertops.

Natalie stands in the completely empty kitchen, having removed the cabinets, countertops, sink and stove.

I love watching the young members of our Habitat Family grow and learn such awesome life skills. Thank you for reading.

– Michelle Smith, Donation and Deconstruction Manager