Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Jacob's Well... A Little History

By Jeff Darr, Vision House Finance Manager

I thought I’d share a little history from my perspective, about the Jacob’s Well project.

To me the Jacob’s Well project is a wonderful example of how God can work. When I joined Vision House in 2007 the land had been purchased and plans were being made. Then the stock and real estate markets dropped significantly in value causing our major funders to back out and we were left with a piece of dirt that probably wasn’t worth what we owed on it. In late 2008 and early 2009 I’m sitting here thinking the project is dead; I’m wondering how we’re going to unwind this thing and how all of that is going to impact Vision House.

In late 2009 or early 2010 after trying to do it the only way we know how, God placed on Susan’s heart (Vision House co-founder and executive director), and she shared with the staff that we were going to get out of God’s way and that if He wanted this project completed He would provide and we’d follow. We would raise a little money, build a little, and continue that process as He provided. Some probably thought we were crazy because I don’t think we ever had much over a couple hundred thousand dollars in the bank at any given time allocated for this $2 million plus project.

God brought people and resources to the project. In early spring 2010, dirt started moving and we had a ground breaking in April 2010. Soon thereafter the foundation was poured. At the bottom of this article is a picture I took in August 2010 when they poured the slab.

Susan had this crazy idea that we’d just get a bunch of volunteers like an extreme home makeover and start framing. That actually happened and we started framing the first Saturday in April 2011. That amazing group of folks returned every Saturday and by the end of May the three-story almost 20,000 square foot building was all framed up. The picture at the top is one I took in late May 2011 of the framed complex. A book could be written about all of the people and organizations that participated.

Another year passes and by late 2012 the doors and windows are in and paint is on. The 2nd picture shows the building in late 2012. It looks good on the outside. A lot has been done on the inside, but there's still a lot of work to do. The process continues and on September 15, 2013 we have our ribbon cutting celebration with 300 people. The picture below is one that I took at that event. And it only took 3 ½ years from when we first started moving dirt… :)

So the day that Susan says we've received our temporary occupancy permit, which hopefully will happen soon, it not only will be a day to celebrate but will also be a day I’ll remember for a long time. If we’d gotten a construction loan we could have completed the project quickly, but we would be paying on it for years, and many people and organizations would have missed the opportunity to get involved. Many were blessed to be involved… including me. Other than some remaining debt relating to the original purchase of the land, this project was built 100% with donated time, materials and contributions. Debt free! The challenge, and great lesson learned, is about patience and waiting on God…  Now I just wonder what’s next… :)

This is what I’m thinking about, and maybe explains a little about why this projects means so much to me…

 Jeff Darr, Vision House Finance Manager

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Over 300 people Celebrate!
Jacob's Well Ribbon Cutting

There was a loud cheer from over 300 people at the new Vision House complex, Jacob’s Well, for homeless mothers and their children. The ribbon cutting celebration and work party on Sunday, September 15th from 1:00 – 4:00pm was a great success! Guests enjoyed a barbeque by award-winning Smokey’s of Cle Elum, potluck dishes, tree and shrub planting and tours of the 12 apartments and children’s center.

Hours volunteered and donated supplies and services equate to over a million dollars saved, allowing Vision House to build the Jacob’s Well complex debt-free. This has happened thanks to the generosity of approximately:
-          3,000 individuals
-          200 businesses
-          65 churches
-          30 organizations
-          20 foundations

Only $82,000 is left to raise to complete the first of the two buildings, which is amazing considering that the total cost for this first phase was $2.7 million!

Click Here to view all of the ribbon cutting event photos.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

FAMILY POTLUCK at Jacob's Well

Sunday, Sept. 15th, 1:00 - 4:00pm

Join us for a huge potluck, tours, and the big ribbon-cutting at 3:00!

Bring your own scissors - and something for potluck!

A-G Salad   H-O Side Dish   P-Z Dessert

Free BBQ by award-winning Smokey's of Cle Elum. with your name and # of guests.

CARPOOLING: Parking on the street is very limited. Please consider organizing a carpool from your office, neighborhood or church.

Looking forward to seeing you on September 15th!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Jacob's Well BBQ a Huge Success!

The Jacob's Well BBQ on June 13th, sponsored by our project partner Campbell Nelson Nissan & VW, blew us away on a number of levels:

• Beautiful weather
• Great clothing donations
• Over 200 guests
• A special visit from Seattle Seahawks player, Jordan Hill
• Just enough rooms for everyone interested to adopt-a-room (other “adoption” options are still available)
• We raised nearly $38,000 in donations and pledges! FAR exceeding what we thought or imagined.

Thanks to Campbell Nelson Nissan & VW for sponsoring the BBQ and for providing $25,000 in matching funds. This brings our funding needs down to approximately $176,000 left to raise to finish the building (DEBT - FREE!!!)

Thank you so much for your hard work and faith in this project –
Click Here to see some of the photos of the BBQ.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Campbell Nelson Bring it Home BBQ Thursday, June 13

Please join us! We are down to the last dollars needed to open Jacob’s Well.
Now is the time to… BRING IT HOME!

All monetary donations will be matched up to $25,000 by Campbell Nelson Nissan!
Thursday, June 13, 2013

Time: 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Adopt-a-Room Meeting 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM

Location  Jacob's Well
19610 20th Ave. NE
Shoreline, WA 98055
(Location does NOT Google well; CLICK HERE for directions.)

Details: - Free BBQ - Hotdogs, hamburgers, chips and drinks
- Self-guided tours
- Adopt-a-room meeting from 7:00 to 8:30 PM
- Make a financial contribution that will be matched up to $25,000!
- Bring clothing for a clothing drive

Cost: - There is no cost to attend this fundraising BBQ.
- A request for donations will be made during the event.
- RSVPs are required.

RSVP: or 425-228-6356

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Cabinet Installation

Thanks to Bellmont Cabinet Company and all of the volunteers who installed the cabinets in the Jacob's Well apartments. Click Here to see a short video. Approximately $300,000 in funding and in-kind donations is needed to finish the complex (debt-free!) and then we can welcome 12 homeless mothers and their children to Jacob's Well where they will begin a journey of restoration towards a bright future. 

Thank you, Bellmont Cabinets!


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Flooring is Installed!

 Click HERE to see a quick video of the new flooring!
Thanks to 30 volunteers and a host of contractors who descended on the Jacob's Well site and installed the carpeting and plank flooring for 12 apartments. It looks so beautiful! We're imagining the moms and kids when they move into their new homes, and how they will enjoy the warmth of the carpet on their little toes, and the ease and beauty of the laminate. 
Our goal is to move homeless families into Jacob's Well this summer. This will be dependent on funding and volunteer resources. To date, volunteer efforts, in-kind contributions, designated dollars for Jacob's Well and Vision House general fund dollars have kept this project debt-free. We need to raise approximately $300,000 in additional funds and in-kind support to finish the building. We're incredibly grateful for all of our donors and volunteers!