Non-Profit Auto-Body Shop Helps Community Overcome Poverty

"Non-profit" and "car repair shop" don't often appear in the same sentence. But maybe they should. Consider how dependent many of us are on our vehicles, and you realize that car repairs are totally essential to daily life for tens of millions of Americans—but only if you can afford them.

"The heat has affected my son and I," Rodney Walker explained to us in the video above, "because he's diabetic, and it's freezing in the car..."

Rodney, a former Navy recruiter, was talking about a time in his life when he wasn't getting a large paycheck, and was struggling to fix his car, which he needs to drive his son around and do daily tasks. Fortunately, Lift Garage in his city of Minneapolis offers "low-cost car repairs for low-income Minnesotans." And Rodney does not take for granted: "Having heat is going to make it so much easier for us."

Cathy Heying is the Executive Director of Lift Garage. At age 38, Cathy decided that she wanted to create a business that would help people in her community who were financially strapped for whatever reason. So Cathy went back to school for auto technology, and then opened Lift Garage.

"There are so many challenges that people face in just trying to survive each day," Cathy said to us. "Many of us who have cars and have resources, we take it for granted that we're going to be able to get our car fixed when we need to get it fixed. We don't realize that for many people not having a car could mean homelessness or going further into poverty."

Every city and town in America should be so lucky to have a Cathy Heying and Lift Garage as a resource and inspiration to always help one another.

This HooplaHa Original was produced and edited by Chris Peck. For more HooplaHa Originals, check out our YouTube channel!

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