The following is an open letter to our Valley from Josy and Steve Block updating the Ewart the progress on the Ewart Family as they recover from their tragic fire last December.
Hello Friends of the Ewarts,
We have not sent an update out since June, and wanted to drop you a note to bring you the latest news on the Ewarts’ recovery from last December’s house fire. Michael, 16, is determined to make a difference in the lives of others. After realizing the smoke alarms in his home were non-functioning, and that the extent of the tragedy may have been significantly minimized had they been working, Michael decided to form a Foundation for that purpose. Their website is currently under construction, but should be up & running in a couple of weeks. You can visit the site at: www.me-safe.org or call Michael at (661) 284-3789.
ME-SAFe, the Michael Ewart Smoke Alarm Foundation, a California non-profit corporation, has a mission to ensure that every home in Santa Clarita Valley, and eventually beyond, has working smoke alarms. The organization intends to become actively involved in the community by raising smoke alarm awareness, educating citizens on how to properly install and care for smoke alarms, as well as providing batteries and smoke alarms for those who cannot afford them. ME-SAFe also intends to provide college scholarships for burn survivors who are making a difference in their communities.
Michael is working with local schools, and neighborhoods to help distribute flyers to the community to remind everyone to check your smoke detectors this weekend, October 29th when you set your clocks back to standard time. "Change your Clock, Change your Battery"
Michael is working mostly with Corporate Sponsors and grants to receive funds and/or donations to provide batteries and/or smoke detectors for families in need.
As a community, we should all be very proud of this young man’s courageous efforts to turn a "negative" into a "positive"!! Let’s all be sure to check our alarms & make sure they are in working order so we can all avoid a repeat of last year’s tragedy.
Michael was recently recognized by the Fire Department and the City Council at the October City Council Meeting. Also, he was recognized by State Senators Tom McClintock and George Runner at the SCV Bar Association Law Appreciation Day. Michael received a community award by the Parks and Recreation Department for being nominated as a citizen demonstrating kindness and character in the SCV. Bravo for Michael!!
Michael continues to undergo countless hours of physical therapy. He is in need of further therapy specifically for the hands. His current Physical Therapist is unable to continue treatments, and the burden of driving to Burbank is taking its toll. Prayers are needed for a hand therapist to come to the aid of Michael.
This school year, Michael has a full workload – he is taking 3 AP classes at Hart High, plus two classes at College of the Canyons! In addition to this, he started playing soccer again! Yes, he is getting a little beat-up along the way, but he is doing fine and is happy to be adding some normalcy into his life!
David is still working through the process of re-building his home. It is a long and tedious process and he is currently still in the phase where the architect is submitting renderings to the Homeowners Association. So far, the renderings have not been approved, and so the process continues. Once the plans are approved, the next phase will be to obtain permits from the city. With any kind of luck, the neighborhood should see some beginnings of work by the end of this year, or early next year.
Additional updates will be sent as needed.
Josy and Steve Block