God willing, by the first week of June 2016, IMAN’s latest Green ReEntry cohort will complete the renovation of the single-family home located at 6224 S. Fairfield Avenue. The revitalized property features a new fully enclosed and insulated back porch; a fully renovated kitchen with all new stainless steel appliances; brand new plumbing systems; energy-efficient electrical systems with LED lighting; energy-efficient heating and cooling systems; a fully insulated attic with an access panel stairway; and a new full bathroom and laundry room in the basement.
This cohort of brothers enjoyed widespread recognition to go along with their successful work. In March, veteran Chicago Sun-Times columnist Neil Steinberg profiled this year’s group of brothers, and in April the Congressional Black Caucus toured the Fairfield home and met with the cohort.
In collaboration with WJ Management, the Green ReEntry cohort remarkably finished this complete “gut-rehab”—from demolition and deconstruction to painting and landscaping—in only three months! The brothers also had the opportunity to learn from skilled plumbing, electrical and HVAC (heating, ventilating, and air conditioning) tradesmen while installing those systems in the house. The cohort was surprised to learn that the HVAC contractor was also an ex-offender and Muslim himself.
As with all previous cohorts, the next goal is full-time employment. So far, one brother was hired by a local construction company, two others have been offered positions with a major home improvement retailer, and the last cohort member has been offered a position as a welder through one of IMAN’s intermediaries.
IMAN looks forward to celebrating the success of this cohort at the Green ReEntry Graduation in November.