Donations Furnish New Apartments for Gulf Coast Evacuees

SCH has most of what they need to make four evacuated families
feel at home
Gilroy – Two weeks after the first evacuee from the gulf coast arrived in Gilroy, South County Housing, Inc., has received almost everything they need to make four families feel at home – including one car.

Gilroy resident Joan Spencer donated a 1991 Dodge Colt to South County Housing for newcomer Alton Chalk, after she read newspaper articles about his plight.

“It explained he was a refugee here and he sold his car for $300 for airfare to get here,” Spencer said. “It was just sitting here and I was going to sell it.”

Instead, Spencer talked to Danil Chavez who works at SCH and offered the car to Chalk.

Chalk, a former resident of New Orleans, arrived in Gilroy Sept. 29 after his second-story apartment was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. SCH expects three more families to arrive in Gilroy in the coming weeks though they do not have a date for their arrival.

SCH has seen an outpouring of gifts and donations from the community, but Jack Foley, a spokesperson for SCH, said they still need dressers and entertainment items such as televisions and DVD players.

“We want to replace all the things they lost,” Foley said.

Chalk is settling in to his new apartment on Eigleberry Street. Chalk, who has dyslexia, had a stroke, heart surgery and complications from diabetes in the last five years which have left him disabled.

John Nolan, owner of Paine’s restaurant in Hollister, put together a fundraiser on Sept. 24 to help disabled victims of the hurricane. He has a brother who is disabled and lives in a SCH complex.

“He is what made me think of it,” Nolan said.

He got together with friends and employees to plan a concert with the “Last Minute Band.” The effort raised $1,000 to help evacuees such as Chalk.

Leave your comments