Many of you have heard of the recent efforts by McKay High School senior Raul Marquez to purchase a house through United Way and convert it into a teen homeless shelter.

The Salem Chapter of NAWIC (National Association of Women In Construction) is leading the charge to make needed repairs and upgrades before Taylor House opens this summer.

NAWIC is looking for volunteer labor, materials, and cash donations to help with the repairs and cover operational expenses if any money is left over. The proposed work includes residing the house, new flooring, painting the inside and outside, and heating and plumbing upgrades.

Donations to date include:

  • Johnson Air Products providing a new furnace and air conditioning unit
  • South Town Glass replacing two windows
  • Caslin has pledged drywall for a storage room
  • JB Instant Lawn and Green Acres Landscape pledging a new lawn
  • Lenity Architecture and Rich Duncan Construction are assisting with project coordination and design

Taylor House is approximately 3400 square feet and has six bedrooms and four bathrooms. It will house up to ten teens (ages 11-17) in crisis at a time with the expectation of serving approximately 100 youth annually. Community Action Agency will oversee operation of the shelter.

Currently there is no overnight shelter available between the Portland area and Albany for homeless minors. Youth find themselves without shelter and for those who do find shelter, many times it is in an unsafe environment due to the lack of resources.

The Taylor House will offer drug & alcohol counseling, mental health services, life & job skills training, community service learning projects, family reunification, as well as direct connections to education, medical services, and housing options.

How To Help

All donations to this project are tax deductible. Donations can be made online here, or checks can be written to United Way of the Mid-Willamette Valley and mailed to 455 Bliler Ave NE, Salem, OR 97301.

For a list of materials needed, or to volunteer or inquire about making a material donation, please contact Dawn Killough at Rich Duncan Construction at 503-390-4999 or