A Regina family of five down on its luck is getting some uplifting news.
Michelle and John Deschamps only have one income between them. John was recently hurt in a crash when he avoided a drunk driver, totaling the family van in the process. Michelle was born with a rare disease that will potentially require both her legs to be amputated and therefore has left her unable to work.
The family ate through its savings making the home wheelchair accessible. However, shingles on the roof were beginning to curl according to John, and added it was only a matter of time before the roof would need to be replaced.
That time has come and it’s not costing the Deschamps a penny.
“It’s an absolute miracle,” said John. “To be honest, this was completely unexpected.”
The family was selected to have its roof replaced at no charge through a program at Regina Trades & Skills Centre (RTSC), which partnered with Wheatland Roofing. The roofing company provided the materials and costs of the project, estimated at around $6,000, while students from RTSC provided the labour and cleanup.
“It’s surreal, it really is, to think that out of anyone that we could have been chosen for something like this,” John said. “When you do hear about it, it gives you that warm heart. You never think that it would happen to you so to get that phone call then was just amazing and to see it happening, it’s still, it’s hard to believe.”
He said an old friend of Michelle’s nominated them.
RTSC Executive Director Brian Shankowsky said it’s the second year they’ve partnered with Wheatland Roofing to offer the program where students get to use what they’ve learned in the classroom and apply it in a practical setting.
“The students love these types of things. They get to practice their skills but they get to help somebody else out who’s having a hard time, who’s having some hardships in their life and they feel very, very special having that opportunity,” said Shankowsky.
It’s a gesture John and his family won’t soon forget.
“This was more than we could have ever imagined. We seriously thank you from the bottom of our hearts.”