Community Service

Montana RCA Bands Together for Charity Reroof Project

by Connie Dempster, executive director, Montana Roofing Contractors Association

 

From Western Roofing Sep/Oct ’13

 

The Montana Roofing Contractors Association (MRCA) was given the opportunity to perform a community service project for a deserving non-profit group serving Montana. The Special K Ranch is located outside of Columbus, Montana, and provides family-oriented Christian homes on a working ranch for adults who have developmental disabilities. Special K Ranch is a place where people who have developmental disabilities live, learn, and work with loving and caring advisers who are committed to sharing their lives in a very special way. The residents are learning independent living and vocational skills through participation in daily personal, household, and ranch responsibilities. The individuals in each home are responsible for the activities and maintenance of their own homes. The Special K accepts no tax dollars; all funds must be earned or raised to keep them going.

All photos courtesy of Emily Barnhardt

         The ranch maintains several family homes facing the same maintenance issues we all are facing. When asked what would help them the most, they quickly replied that two of their houses desperately needed to be reroofed. The current MRCA president, Tom Bradford of Bradford Roof Management, Billings, Montana, brought their situation to the attention of the members of the association and all immediately agreed that this was a great project for the membership to undertake. Within hours of sending out the initial email inquiry, two local supply companies, MacArthur Company and R&S Supply, volunteered to provide the materials. Thanks to this generous donation by these two commercial members, MRCA knew the project could be a reality. A general membership meeting was called late in April to pull the rest of the details together.

Members from around the state volunteered labor, tools, equipment, and material disposal for the project. The dates of May 13-14 were selected to begin the work. The Special K Ranch was notified and could not have been more appreciative or excited about the prospect of hosting MRCA at their property. As the date approached, the weather continued to look good. The following companies arrived at the project to begin tear-off on the first home: Bradford Roof Management, Billings; Empire Heating and Cooling, Billings; Quality Roofing, Bozeman; and Thiel Brothers Roofing, Sidney.

Photographer Emily Barnhardt volunteered to photograph the project for MRCA and Special K Ranch. MacArthur Company delivered the materials for the first house that same day.

May 13 was over 90°, 30° hotter than the average temperature for this time of year in Montana. Fortunately, the weather was much kinder the following day and topped out at about 65° with less wind. Kirkness Roofing, Billings, joined the companies already listed and new shingles began to go on the first house while the tear-off for the second house was finished. By mid-morning, R&S Supply arrived with the materials for the second house. The shingling continued all day with a short lunch break provided in part by High Prairie Marketing, a commercial member of MRCA; Roofing Resources, Inc.; and Subway in Columbus. At the end of the day, Special K provided everyone with barbecue and shared their many thanks and appreciation for a job well done.

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