When you’re Andrea Lambert, the wife of Life Remodeled founder and CEO Chris Lambert, you hear daily the blessings and frustrations of the urban mission dedicated to remodeling lives one neighborhood at a time.
When you’re Andrea Lambert, Life Remodeled staff member, you hear many of the same things but from students, residents and community leaders of the neighborhood where Life Remodeled is investing.
“In some ways, being Chris’ wife, I always got to hear what was going on. I have been present from the very beginning, “she said.
Now Instead of supporting Chris as a stay-at-home Mom to their sons Levi and Judah, Andrea is Life Remodeled’s de facto Chief Listening Officer, a role for which she is uniquely qualified.
Andrea is building connections in Central, relying on her Doctor of Ministry of Psychotherapy and Pastoral Counseling.
“I feel like I use it all the time,” she said. “That’s what got me interested in counseling, helping people see the opportunities that they have. That all comes through relationships.”
She joined the staff in late 2016 as a community engagement assistant in Central, where Life Remodeled’s Six-Day Project will run from July 31 to August 5. Her focus is students at Central High School and Durfee Elementary-Middle School, which Life Remodeled is converting into a Community Innovation Center as the K-8 students there relocate to Central this fall.
Andrea brings professionals to Central to help cast vision for students unaware of opportunities because they have so few resources.
“They have few extracurricular activities because of a lack of funding, so we’re looking for non-profits to help fill the gap,” Andrea said. “All the ideas the students have had, I bring back to the Life Remodeled team. It is part of the process. Are we meeting what the students are asking for, such as a recreation center, after-school programs, tutoring?”
Andrea empathizes with the students at Central and Durfee because she grew up in humble beginnings in Southwest Detroit, where she lived until third grade and spoke her native Romanian as a first language.
“I will see kids walking across a bridge over a highway, and I remember the challenges and fears I had as a little girl in the city,’ she said. “I have always had a heart for the poor. God wired me that way.”
“I went to Bible college and went on mission trips. I lived on Skid Row in LA. The stories that changed my life were going into crack hotels and bringing kids out. I saw the pain and need that are in inner cities and I want to be part of the solution instead of just seeing the negative and not doing anything about it.”