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Solar panel awards

Day one of the solar panel awards was an absolute success!

We provided 15 people with life-changing solar panels and the accessories required for installation.

We are thrilled to help out more nomads today. A big thank you to all the wonderful volunteers. We couldn’t do any of this without you. @ Quartzsite, Arizona

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Meet Walt, a HOWA volunteer.

When Walt was 23, this Homes On Wheels Alliance (HOWA) multipurpose volunteer left Boston on a backpacking trip to Kathmandu, Nepal. He knew a lot about camping thanks to his involvement with the Boy Scouts. Walt was gone for six months.

Many decades later, he moved to Arizona. It was his base for journeys to most of the national parks and forests. Walt said he wasn’t familiar with boondocking or how to live on BLM lands and spent those early years in RV parks and fee campgrounds. Knowing there had to be a less expensive way, he watched many YouTube videos such as Cheap RV Living.

Open and inviting, Walt enjoys meeting people and helping new people on how to live their best nomad life. “Fire, Food, and Friendship” is his mantra and he said that a night never passes without a fire (unless circumstances prohibit it). No one is out here alone unless they really want to be.

He has served on many boards and organizations. Walt said there are “lifters and leaners in the world.” Leaners are people who complain about how something is run, but when asked for their recommendations, go quiet. Unless people are willing “to lift” their criticism is not as meaningful. He has helped with the annual HOWA meeting and the live feed.

If you want interesting unguarded conversation and wisdom, look for Walt. He’ll be the one extending an invitation for blueberry pancakes at breakfast or chili at dinner.

Post contribution by: Diana Hollenbeck

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Simply Lesa

Originally from Maine, Lesa has been part of the Cheap RV Living nomadic community since 2005. After years on the road, Lesa was blessed with a piece of property and spent her time as a nomad in her SUV.

In 2018, health issues required that she stay on her property in a travel trailer that was not roadworthy. Healthy again, in April of 2019, Lesa hit the road in her SUV. In September, Lesa returned to her property to sell the trailer to travel full-time and, within two weeks of selling the trailer, the SUV developed an oil leak and her dog was diagnosed terminally ill. Lesa contacted Homes On Wheels Alliance (HOWA) for a tent to sleep in while her application for wheels was being decided.

Lesa just spent her first night in her HOWA no-build build minivan and reports that the bed is “great” and she slept soundly even without the planned window coverings.

Many of Lesa’s life events led to stoicism and her pursuit of minimalism. All of her creative pursuits were taken away in very traumatic ways which led her to connect more with nature while finding meaning and freedom in less. According to Lesa, being a minimalist doesn’t mean living without, but living with things chosen with respectful intention. With gratitude to HOWA, its donors and volunteers, this intelligent and thoughtful woman is looking forward to her next adventure and giving back to the nomadic community in her own special way.

Post contribution by: Diana Hollenbeck

 
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Danyel’s Nomadic Journey

Working away sanding the walls for her new cargo trailer home, Danyel is originally from Michigan. A warm, kind woman with an engaging smile and positive attitude, Danyel started her nomadic life two years ago when she was evicted. She and her son watched lots of Cheap RV Living videos and knew they wanted to live a nomadic life. Her parents had passed away in 2014 and 2016, and she knew she didn’t want to waste any more time being unhappy. Her son had never traveled and they decided to visit places they’d never been.

After a trip to Home Depot, and armed with “no carpentry skills,” they constructed bunkbeds for the minivan and took off on their adventure. They lived in a state park, then Danyel got her first work camping job in Ohio. Her son enrolled in an online high school and graduated this year. Unfortunately, in May, and her second season of work camping, the engine went on her minivan. While her savings was not enough for the down payment on a cargo van, she was able to scrape enough together for one on a 2009 mini SUV.

Through Cheap RV Living, Danyel learned about Home On Wheels Alliance (HOWA) and its mission to help nomads in need. She applied and was selected to receive the cargo trailer at the build-out event in Pahrump, Nevada. Overwhelmed to be selected, her next hurdle was to get to Nevada. She had a new tow hitch and tires installed on her mini SUV. Her son volunteered his savings for Danyel to travel to Nevada and back. She bought a tent. Friends pitched in money to help and her work camping job paid her for the full season although it was not up until November 1st.

Once the build out of her beautiful tiny home is complete, she plans to hitch it up and return to pick up her son and dog. Then it’s back to the West to live her version of the nomadic dream.

Post contribution by: Diana Hollenbeck

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Watch Bob’s LIVE FEED Oct 9, 3 pm Pacific

Join Bob’s LIVE FEED Wednesday, October 9 at 3 pm Pacific!

Topic of the Day “Living in an SUV or Car”

There will be a live panel with 3 nomads that have first hand experience!

Check out Bob’s CheapRVLiving YouTube channel to join in

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A success story from the Nomad Emergency Fund

A request for assistance:

I’m 68, a f/t nomad for 6 yrs. presently in Santa Fe, NM. Three weeks ago I spent my emergency funds/savings of $1000. on getting my van fixed, I was down for 2 weeks. Attached is the labor bill, I tried to fix it myself and spent 400 dollars on replacing parts (it ended up as a bad electrical connection). Then I had a medical emergency last Friday.

The prostate operation I had a week ago started hemorrhaging and I drove myself to ER. They put a catheter in and let me go. I went to my surgeon’s office across the parking lot and blacked out in his office (shock from losing so much blood), I woke up back in ER (amb) and was admitted. That afternoon, I was back in surgery. I’m doing well now.

I have a specialist Dr. appt on Aug 21 in Albuquerque and I’m afraid of driving that distance b/c when I had the mech. problem, they told me how bad my tires are (I have no spare). Therefore, I’m requesting financial assistance to replace my tires. I’ve exhausted my financial resources and have no family to help. I hope that you are able to assist me.

Assistance prvided:

Dear Charmaine, 

 
     Thanks to you, Bob, Suanne, HOWA, Phyllis, and the lady who first took my phone call, I’m sorry I can’t recall your name, KC, and of course, the generous donation person!
 
     I have the new tires installed and made it to my Doctor’s appt in Albuquerque, NM and back safely. 
 
     I will be traveling to Ehrenberg area the end of Sept to join the caravans for the winter. Looking forward to volunteering at the RTR. See you then.
 
Sincerely,

J

 
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