A Lotta Love at our Center of Hope

Heather, a designer by trade, wasn’t sure what she wanted to do next. Having recently lost her father, her friend Renee, also a designer, gifted her a paintbrush with a simple message: “paint the life you want.”

After having met with Charlotta from Raleigh, NC and lunch conversations with Renee who too shared her interest in nonprofit work, Heather had an idea that hit home; to bring the nonprofit called “A Lotta Love” to Charlotte.

Based out of Raleigh, NC, A Lotta Love goes to women and children homeless shelters and gives rooms a makeover, breathing life into these sterile spaces and giving the residents “a home away from home.”

“This design work is different than what I would normally do” Heather said while painting the teen dorm at the Salvation Army’s Center of Hope in Charlotte. “I’m using my skills to make a difference.”

Renee shared with Heather that during her Breast Cancer radiation treatment, she always thought what are others going home to? And couldn’t imagine being down on your luck and having to go home to a space that wasn’t encouraging. With shared interest and connecting with Dawn and Courtney, collectively they decided their first project would be two rooms at The Salvation Army Center of Hope.

“I always am designing, transforming these two rooms is personal. I left home at an early age and can relate to what a room means to someone at a young age. I want these boys to come home, walk in and feel like it is theirs. That it was done for them.”

Using her father’s tools (who was a contractor) made this project that much more special for Heather. “I’m glad the four of us are able to do this project together,” Heather said about working alongside Renee, Dawn and Courtney. “We can get to know each other, enjoy this experience together and infuse a lotta love into these spaces.”

Using the same paintbrush that Renee gave her, and after a few trips to IKEA, At Home and Lowe’s, the four women created a special place for the teen boys and women in the Project FIGHT program.

As the women and children walked into their dorm that day, they saw freshly painted walls, new sheets and bedding, art on the walls, colorful rugs on the floor and even lockers for the boys to store their belongings.

Thank you, A Lotta Love, you made the dorms a special place for our residents.

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