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Founder of Mobilya Proje receives surprise community hero award

Founder of Mobilya Proje receives surprise community hero award

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — The Furniture Project was founded by Omaha firefighter Drew Gerken. Now — He is known for everything he and the organization have done to help others over the past decade.

  • The nonprofit organization helps thousands of people complete their homes with the free, gently used furniture they deliver.
  • Baxter Subaru surprised Gerken with the First Community Hero Award.
  • A large number of coworkers, friends, and colleagues were in the nonprofit’s warehouse for this surprise.

PUBLICATION TEXT:

In the wake of disaster, neighbors are helping neighbors rebuild not just their homes, but their lives. And one man is being recognized for all he’s done for tornado victims and beyond. Baxter Subaru surprised Drew Gerken with its first community hero award. He’s an Omaha firefighter and founder of local nonprofit The Furniture Project.

Thanks to the work initiated by Gerken, families experiencing difficulties will no longer have one more issue to worry about.

Over the past decade, the nonprofit has grown from a small volunteer-run organization to a program with three moving trucks and a large warehouse.

“To see Drew go from a 2002 Honda Pilot with a saucer on it to a car with a full-time warehouse and a full staff, it’s just a beautiful transformation,” said Gerken’s son, Logan Field.

The Furniture Project helps thousands of people complete their homes with gently used furniture, delivered free of charge.

“When I think about the individuals and families touched by this work, I am so proud, they are not lying on the ground today, they were literally on the ground last night,” Gerken said.

Wednesday – Baxter Subaru surprised Gerken with its first Community Hero Award and donated a new truck to support the nonprofit’s growth.

“Drew was the kind of person who, when he saw a problem, did everything he could to fix it,” said Matt Hoppe, executive director of the Furniture Project.

“His work ethic is beyond anything I’ve ever seen; I’ve seen him lift seats and push them into a van all by himself. He’s just amazing and he does it because he loves his community. He loves people,” says Mike Bennett, general manager of Baxter Subaru.

“I don’t feel like I can really take in all the credit. However, I am so grateful for all the support,” Gerken said.

Gerken says it takes a village to make it happen, and he’s built one of support and love.

Gerken says it’s always important to help your neighbors and encourages others to do the same if you can use your talents.