Oakwood Electric & Generator Partners with Local Charities

Partnering with local organizations to give a peace of mind, Oakwood Electric & Generator this week helped donate and install a life-saving generator for a Downers Grove family in need.

Siblings Noah and Laine VanHoutan are battling LINCL-Batten Disease, a rare genetic illness that, over time, robs them (and more than 400 children across the country) of speech, balance, and mobility. LINCL-Batten disease (without a cure)  is terminal, often between ages eight and 12.

Earlier this year, co-owner of Oakwood Electric & Generator Becky Rheintgen answered a call from the children’s grandfather. The VanHoutan family recently experienced outages and was often left without power to operate life-saving equipment, including feeding tubes and pumps.

“Norb shared how neighbors would run extension cords across the street when the power went out,” said Rheintgen, “Without actually being there at 2 a.m., we knew we had to help with something more permanent and reliable,” she said.

Because the VanHoutans were seeking grants to purchase a generator, Oakwood Electric & Generator agreed to sell the generator and accessories, at cost, and donate labor for the installation.

Oakwood Electric & Generator then asked The Grove Foundation, a local not-for-profit, to consider the cause. The Board donated $500 to the VanHoutan Generator Project to cover costs of installation materials. Rheintgen said Board members also made calls to local businesses in an effort to secure funding and resources.

To help get the job done and fully fund the project, the Downers Grove chapter of 100 Women Who Care  (a grassroots group that raises community funds for those in need) wrote a $4,500 check to cover remaining costs.

“The generosity and support we have in Downers Grove is remarkable,” said Rheintgen. ‘Very often we are called when there’s crisis. It’s gratifying as a small business we’re able to work with not-for-profit organizations to prevent crisis and help others when they need it most.”

For more information about the VanHoutan Generator Project, please call Oakwood Electric & Generator at (630) 964-0541, or write beckyandrob@oakwoodelectric.com. To learn more about Noah and Laine and the VanHoutan family, please visit www.noahshope.com.

Oakwood Electric & Generator, family owned since 1959, provides high-quality electric service in the suburbs of Chicago. It works closely with general contractors for all projects, big or small, and caters especially to special requests and difficult schedules. Oakwood Electric & Generator, with a store in Westmont, is also a distributor of Generac, a leading manufacturer of generators and engine-powered products. For details, visit www.oakwoodelectric.com.

The Grove Foundation is a Downers Grove not-for-profit and, since 1991, provides financial support for educational, recreational, and social programming in its community for organizations like SEASPAR, HGNA and others. Visit ww.thegrovefoundation.org for more information.

100 Women Who Care, founded in 2006 in Jackson, Michigan, meets quarterly to raise funds for local organizations and families in need. Members who do not have time to volunteer, but want to support their community financially, pool funds and send a check. For more about how women in Downers Grove quietly support local needs in great ways, please call Joanne Walthius at (630) 512-0171, or Sharon Sartori at (630) 969-6179 . Or, visit www.100womenwhocaredownersgrove.com