Winterization is a community service project in which students from Purdue University assist in preparing the yards and homes of the elderly and disabled in Tippecanoe County for winter.
Winterization 2021 will take place on the morning of Saturday, November 13th. Volunteers will rake leaves, clean gutters, wash windows, trim shrubs, and do other winterizing tasks for the residents.
Conversation with the residents is also important, although this year, this will be done by phone. Many of the residents are unable to leave their homes regularly and have few visitors. This year we are hoping to have over 400 residents who are eagerly awaiting for us to “Winterize” their homes.
For many years, a high school in Greenwood, Indiana has sponsored a similar project. In the Fall of 2002, a Purdue freshman named Lauren brought the idea to West Lafayette. As an active member of Wesley Foundation Campus Ministry, Lauren inspired her new community to lead this project. The first year, in 2002, saw thirty volunteers serve ten homes.
Winterization has surpassed many milestones over the past 18 years, including:
2005 -- 100 volunteers
2008 -- 100 homes served
2013 -- 1,000 volunteers
2017 -- our collection of rakes grew to over 1000
2019 -- biggest year yet! 380 homes served by 1,350 volunteers
Winterization 2020 was a complete success! Even with all of the changes due to COVID-19. We were able to serve 305 residents with over 1,000 volunteers.
Many student groups have co-sponsored this activity with Wesley at times in the last six years, including: Baptist Foundation and Purdue Collegiate Ministry. Student participants come by themselves, with groups of friends, and also through their student organizations.