Rebuilding a home in Benton Harbor

A single mom bought an abandoned home in Benton Harbor and she said thieves broke in and stole thousands of dollars worth of appliances. 

Lisa Gorman works at Lighthouse ministries and she decided to buy a home close by so she can be more invested in her charity work. 

Gorman said the home on Pipestone Road was built in 1905. 

Gorman said, “We took it down to the studs and we discovered that there was black mold and lead, and of course with a small child, I knew we couldn't have that so we sought to put it back together again. Well in doing so, it took away all of the funds that I'd been saving up.”

Lisa and 8-year-old Nia began construction and then the unthinkable happened. Thieves raided their home and stole two furnaces worth $20,000 and all of the copper.

Gorman said, “All of the piping that used to be over here and all of the electrical over here. All the plumbing and electrical was taken.”

Little Nia said she has faith that everything is going to be okay.

Nia said, “Even though we had a few struggles in life, the stronger we are united, when there's rough times, we can make it through... since this house was already gutted down and bad and sad. We thought that we could make a living light inside of it by us moving in it.”

Gorman said she spent $35,000 on renovations and she bought the home for $12,000. She said she looked into getting a loan but they aren't eligible. 

Gorman said, “I'm in a 'catch 22' so what Nia and I decided to do a year ago, we cut off all television. And we started saving funds and that's how we were able to repair some of the windows. And get it up to where it is. My mom is in hospice care, and she needs to come and live with us.”

Gorman said there's light at the end of the tunnel to their sad story.  

Gorman said. “I have a contractor that has come forward after hearing our story and he is willing to help us put the house back together. His labor will be free but it our responsibility to help cover the cost of the material.”

Gorman said the contractor believes the supplies will cost $30,000. 

Nia said she still thinks the home is special. 

Gorman said, “She thought it was just like charcoal but I said I see diamonds inside of it. And I think that this house will be great even though it's torn down and gutted down I think we can still make a difference.”

If you would like to help Lisa Gorman and her daughter during this difficult time here's a link to their Go Fund Me Account:

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