By Travis Hendershott, Partnership Coordinator

The above picture is myself sitting with Patricia. This is a deck that Next Step helped build in the back of her home that she has lived in for many years in an older part of the Colorado Springs city. Not only did we build the deck, among other construction projects, we also were able to paint her house a wonderful purple. It’s her favorite color. She calls it her “pearl” and even says it has greatly improved her attitude around her home. Her neighbors say the purple is perhaps too bold – Patricia just says they don’t have the backbone to sport the color. Wimps.

Believe it or not, the first time I met with Patricia I was completely unable to access her back deck from the house. The process to get there included exiting out the front door, down the steps, around the fence, unlocking the clumsy gate, stepping over the rubble, to find a piled mess of… well just about anything you can think of. The deck was buried to say the least. Adding into consideration the fact that Patricia is physically unable to walk down steps – I quickly realized that Patricia hadn’t seen her backyard in years. Wow.

This summer Next Step was able to create a way for Patricia to safely get to her deck through the backdoor. She sits here everyday now, for the majority of the day – weather permitting. She talks of the birds, “Oh the birds! They sing to me”. They’ve replaced her television. She says the fresh air makes her happy. Oasis.

Quality of living hasn’t been like this for Patricia in years. Not everything is perfect, but everything is just right. It’s the small changes that do big things and volunteers at Next Step, in some way, were able to be a part of Patricia’s new love for deck sitting. She even talks of having a party in her new backyard to celebrate the purple house. I’m sure we’ll be dancing with the birds.


He brought me out into a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me.                

Psalm 18:19




Next Step Ministries