Roof for Heroes Recipient-Audrey Normand
We are honored to select Audrey Normand as our first Roof Hero. Audrey is a Massachusetts licensed Registered Nurse who has been working at the Northshore Education Consortium in Beverly since December of 2018. In this role, she cares for students with complex medical needs, pursuing her passion for helping children.
About Roof for Heroes
We are partnering with GAF to give a FREE ROOF to a deserving essential worker in the Essex County area. We love their motto, Protect What Matters Most, as you are protecting what’s inside the home…family. Our core niche is, Treat Homeowners Like Family– treat others as you would want to be treated so it’s a perfect partnership! Learn more about Roof for Heroes and nominate a local front-line professional:
Audrey is a mother of two boys, ages nine and eleven. Her son Dante was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia at age four, underwent two years of treatment, and became cancer free. Before Audrey’s youngest son was born, she worked at a commercial real-estate firm. While Dante was undergoing treatment, Audrey spent most of her time caring for him. Living through Dante’s illness and treatments inspired Audrey to become a nurse. She applied to nursing school on the day of Dante’s last chemotherapy treatment and graduated in 2018.
Audrey’s goal was to own a forever home in Wenham, where her family could settle long-term. Wenham is where the boys’ father lives and where the boys attend school. Habitat for Humanity decided to help make Audrey’s dream come true, and they began construction on Audrey’s home in 2019. Audrey has enjoyed working with the crew and volunteers on her home’s project site each week and is looking forward to living in her beautiful new home when the project is complete.
Coastal Windows & Exteriors will be providing Audrey’s new home with beautiful GAF Timberline HDZ shingles. GAF roofs are reliable, energy efficient, and long-lasting, making them the perfect choice for a forever home. Audrey’s roof will be a light Fox Hollow Grey color, which will reflect sunlight and keep her energy bills low.
Read our Interview with Audrey to Learn More
How did you hear about our program Roofs for Heroes and/or news from Don Preston that we were donating a free roof to you?
I had not been familiar with the Roofs for Heroes program prior to a few weeks ago when it was mentioned to me by Don Preston. Once he brought up the work that Coastal Windows & Exteriors has done for Habitat in the past, it stirred up quite a bit of conversation and excitement on the job site A number of the volunteer crew working with us that day had so many great things to say about the work that had been done by Coastal. I realized immediately how lucky I was to have been chosen as a recipient of a new roof.
What kind of work do you do?
I work locally, in Beverly, MA as a school nurse at the Northshore Education Consortium. I have been at the school for just over two and a half years and cannot imagine doing anything else. It is the most rewarding career. It’s hard to call a place that you look forward to going to everyday a job. My students and coworkers are so valuable to me!
Why are you looking forward to getting a new roof?
There are a number of reasons that I am looking forward to getting a new roof. The first being that it truly symbolizes my providing a home, and a “roof over the heads” of my family. Everything that I do, the work that I put in, is for my boys. This will mean that we never have to worry about the safety and security of our roof. It also means that the Habitat for Humanity volunteers who have been working on the house, will be able to check this off of their list and move on to other parts of the house. I definitely heard a few cheers from the crew when they heard the roof would be donated by Coastal Windows & Exteriors as a part of the Roofs for Heroes program!
What are your feelings getting a new FREE roof from Coastal Windows & Exteriors?
My initial feeling towards being chosen for this program was of disbelief. Having been chosen as a Habitat for Humanity homeowner is absolutely life changing. I felt as if I won the lottery. You don’t usually win the lottery once, let alone twice. I am so thankful that Don Preston and Habitat were aware of the Roofs for Heroes program. I am excited and blown away by how beautiful the roof will be!
How has COVID pandemic impacted your life and your work?
When the COVID pandemic first began my life in many ways came to a standstill. On the same day in March both my boys (they were in the 3rd and 5th grades) and myself were sent home for the day. Like everyone else we had no way of knowing we would not be able to return to school and work. We walked out the door thinking we would be back the following day, or at least the following Monday. In the weeks following I became a teacher in addition to juggling my roles as mom, nurse and full-time student. I began teaching my own students remotely and attending all meetings from the comfort of my dining room table, or the “command center” as it came to be called. I don’t think we have eaten dinner at the table since March! As a family we have learned so much about each other. We have learned to adapt to a new “normal.” In many ways I am thankful for the time that I have had with my boys, but the quarantine has had an impact on us, as it has so many others.
What does a typical day look like once you come home from your essential work/job?
My workdays have changed so much since coronavirus. There is a level of stress and uncertainty that was not present prior to the pandemic. My day once I leave work and get home has changed as well. While I once felt comfortable walking in the door and hugging my boys, I take special care to change and leave my work uniform and shoes in an area that no one will come into contact with them. I worry about my children’s safety as I do the safety of my students. I worry about bringing something home to them, or to their grandparents, despite my care and attention to safe practice at work.
We at Coastal Windows & Exteriors are excited to be providing a new roof for Audrey’s soon-to-be finished home as a way to say thank you for her role as a hero in our community! Do you know a local front-line professional who you’d like to nominate? Click here to learn more about nominee qualifications and to nominate a local hero.
The job site in progress:
The Coastal Windows & Exteriors Team on the Job Site with Audrey
Audrey and Stephanie Vanderbilt, the owner of Coastal Windows & Exteriors
Stay tuned for a finished photo of Audrey’s forever home!