"Operation Soldier Assist" -- A Community Service Project by Kansas City's NARI and AUSA

Share Article

"Operation Soldier Assist" is a community service project of Kansas City NARI (National Association of the Remodeling Industry), in cooperation with the Greater Kansas City Chapter of the Association of the United States Army (KCAUSA). More than 40 home remodeling professionals and other volunteers from the Kansas City area will spend the weekend of Sept. 15 and 16 in Lowry City, Mo. making much-needed repairs to the home of a member of the Missouri National Guard who was severely injured in 2003 while serving in Iraq.

More than 40 home remodeling professionals and other volunteers from the Kansas City area will spend the weekend of Sept. 15 and 16 in Lowry City, Mo. making much-needed repairs to the home of a member of the Missouri National Guard who was severely injured in 2003 while serving in Iraq.

Called "Operation Soldier Assist," this humanitarian effort is a community service project of Kansas City NARI (National Association of the Remodeling Industry), in cooperation with the Greater Kansas City Chapter of the Association of the United States Army (KCAUSA).

Kansas City NARI members will donate materials and labor to make significant improvements to the home of Sgt. George Bellis, 41, who lives in a 1911 farmhouse in Lowry City with his wife, Tricia, and their three children, Canaan, 12, Hunter, 9, and Grace, 4. KCAUSA volunteers are assisting the family and organizing support from Soldiers and community and civic organizations.

"It is our intent, and that of KCAUSA, that this project serves as a model for bringing communities and organizations together to help those who have served and sacrificed for our country," said Scott Balentine, CR, CLC, Kansas City NARI president and owner of Lifestyles Custom Homes & Remodeling, Inc.

During the course of his deployment in Iraq in 2003-2004 for the Missouri National Guard, Bellis was involved in multiple incidents and accidents in which he suffered severe concussions and head injuries. Upon his return home, he was diagnosed with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and was medically discharged from the Missouri National Guard due to the extent of his injuries. Because of Sgt. Bellis' condition, his wife terminated her employment to care for George and their three children.

"When NARI approached us to identify a military family who they could help, ,, we jumped at the chance," said KCAUSA Chapter President Mike Neer. "That's one of KCAUSA's main functions in the community. This project permits the remodeling community, vendors, suppliers, other contributors, and concerned and appreciative citizens the opportunity to help a Soldier and his family who have participated in securing our Nation. And at a regional and national level the project serves as a model for other communities to follow in assisting worthy Soldiers in their own localities."

Improvements to the home include converting the garage into comfortable living space, upgrading the kitchen, improving and repairing two bathrooms, replacing the deck and patio door, repairing or replacing windows, repairing flooring transitions between rooms, and upgrading electrical service.

Balentine and Neer said the community has become more involved with the project as planning has progressed. In addition to building materials and labor donated by NARI members, , other contributions include a full, four-year undergraduate scholarship from Grantham University of Kansas City, Mo.; appliances from Nebraska Furniture Mart; a complete desktop computer from Micro Center; and a vehicle to transport supplies from Ryder Trucks. More contributions are in the works.

"We are totally overwhelmed by the generosity of Kansas City NARI and the Kansas City Chapter of the Association of the United States Army," said Tricia Bellis. "While we believe there are other families who may be more deserving, we are most grateful for all of the wonderful volunteers who donated materials and their time to make improvements to our home. We cannot thank them enough."

Kansas City NARI is a professional non-profit trade association representing more than 290 professional remodeling experts, including contractors, manufacturers, distributors and wholesalers and lenders. NARI members must complete an extensive application process, be in business for at least one year and follow the organization's code of ethics. NARI is committed exclusively to serving the professional remodeling industry and to serving as an ally to homeowners. The national association represents more than 7,000 members nationwide and is the only independent national association dedicated solely to the remodeling industry. NARI's focus is on professional conduct, continuing education and training, and fair and ethical treatment within the industry. For more information, visit http://www.remodelingkc.com.

The Greater Kansas City Chapter of the Association of the United States Army (KCAUSA) is one of 127 Association of the United States Army (AUSA) chapters located in nine regions worldwide. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., AUSA is a private, non-profit educational organization committed to supporting America's Army--Active, National Guard, Reserve, Civilians, Retirees, and family members. Comprised of more than 600 individual and corporate members, the KCAUSA mission is to promote an understanding of national security issues and the importance of maintaining a strong and ready Army and to enhance patriotism within the Greater Kansas City area. For more information, visit http://www.kcausa.org.

For more information, contact:
Kansas City NARI
Beth Paulsen
913-648-1710
beth(at)paulsencomm.com

KCAUSA
Mark Wiggins
540-287-1763
mark(at)mhwpr.com

###

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Visit website