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Changing lives using power tools: Program helps women build projects, self-esteem

Shellie Layne created the Women Under Construction Network to help other women fix what's broken in their lives and their homes.

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Shellie Layne is helping women to fix what’s broken in their homes and lives.

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"Repairing homes, building women, changing lives," she says of her organization's mission.

Layne started nonprofit the Women Under Construction Network after her own life needed repair.

"My life if you will, divorce, being a single mom, I was a real estate mogul, if you will, six figures and then just, I hate to say it, went down to minimum wage. But had I not had that happen, Women Under Construction would not exist," said Laye.

Now she teaches women how to use tools and do home projects themselves, without relying on outside help.

Participants like Jackie French say the program was incredibly valuable.

"‘Do you want to learn how to fix things at home?’ I said, ‘Absolutely! Saving money, I can do it myself,'" French said. "It was everyday parallels to not only fixing your life, it was fixing things within you."

Along the way, the women in Layne's program build the confidence they need to tackle repairs in their personal lives, too.

"Building the broken areas of their lives. We use everything. All kinds of tools, nails, and hammers and saws, as you can see things to build walls. But this really is just the carrot that gets them introduced to building themselves, their self-esteem, their character, just who they are as women," said Layne.

"Truly, truly changed my life. I thank God for Shellie and her vision and passion," said French.

You can find more about the Women Under Construction Network on their Facebook page or their website.