LAKEWOOD RANCH, Fla. – Several members of the Gulf Coast Builders Exchange (GCBX), a not-for-profit trade organization, are providing $25,000 of pro bono in-kind services to help renovate an existing 3,657-square-foot duplex for Prodigal Daughters, a Christ-centered rehabilitation ministry for women suffering from the bondage of addiction, human trafficking, abuse or any other life-controlling issues.
The Prodigal Daughters Journey Home serves as the nonprofit’s only housing for its 18-month to 24-month residential rehabilitation program. The four-bedroom and two-bathroom duplex consists of a playroom, craft room, living room and dining room. The home’s occupancy can accommodate 6 people, but the nonprofit is currently working on a change-of-use permit to allow up to 23 people.
During the 2-month renovation, GCBX members and other community partners are rezoning for the property to take in more occupants, providing painting and project management services, replacing rotten wood throughout the building, making cash contributions and installing new sinks, countertops and windows.
Members who are stepping up to help with the project include Aqua Plumbing & Air, Bright Future Electric, Buffalo Lodging, Colonial Precast Concrete LLC, Current Builders Constructors, Forristall Enterprises, Graber Cabinets, Habitat for Humanity Manatee County, Mullets Aluminum Products, Inc., Office of J. Rameau, PGT Innovations, Service Contracting Services, Sharp Properties, Inc., Tradesmen International, United States Awning Company and Woodruff & Sons, Inc.
“I have four daughters, and I believe in what Prodigal Daughters does and what they provide for women is very special,” said Darrell Turner, marketing director of the west coast division for Current Builders Constructors and the GCBX member who led this initiative. “After meeting the staff, I just fell in love with their mission and the organization. Thank you to our GCBX members for lending a helping hand and contributing to our communities.”
According to the National Human Trafficking Hotline, Florida ranks third in U.S. in human trafficking cases reported by states in 2018, behind only California and Texas.
Since September 2019, the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office recorded 494 overdoses and 57 overdose deaths for the year so far. That number is up from 362 overdose calls and 33 deaths in all of 2018.
Prodigal Daughters offers a safe haven for women suffering from the bondage of addiction, human trafficking, abuse or any other life-controlling issues and accepts children up to 12 years. At the nonprofit, women are mentored and educated daily in healing, empowerment, parenting and life skills. The nonprofit also has scholarships available and an internship program where women who have been through the process and have graduated can give back to other ladies and children in similar situations.
“Seeing Darrell and the community step up on this project is such an encouragement for us and the girls,” said Denise Gattuso, founder and executive director of Prodigal Daughters. “Prodigal Daughters is one of the only housing for women and children in the area. We’re trying to provide a place for women and their children to get the help they need before their children are taken. Space was very tight, this much-needed renovation provided 13 updated windows for protection and now the space is much more efficient for moms and their children.”
Prodigal Daughters works closely with the Manatee County Sheriff’s Department, Drug Free Manatee, Department of Children and Family Services, The Safe Children’s Coalition, Sarasota Medical Pregnancy Center, Your Life Matters Project, Centerstone and The Community Foundation of Sarasota County, as well as other community businesses, ministries and government entities.
About the Gulf Coast Builders Exchange
The Gulf Coast Builders Exchange (GCBX) was established in 1952 and is a not-for-profit corporation operating as a trade organization under the guidance of a volunteer board of directors as representatives of the industry. The not-for-profit organization represents a broad cross section of the building industry, including contractors, subcontractors, suppliers and others from affiliated industries. The GCBX membership is comprised of more than 400 companies in Manatee, Sarasota and Charlotte counties. It includes some of the most respected contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, service providers and businesses in construction-affiliated industries. GCBX’s advocacy efforts on behalf of the building industry are conducted in Manatee, Sarasota and Charlotte counties. For more information, visit www.GCBX.org.