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Iowa teacher builds furniture for people in need

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When Nate Evans, a full-time teacher and father of four, isn’t tending to his family, students, or customers at a local auto shop, he’s woodworking in his Iowa garage.

It’s almost become a full-time job and it’s for a good cause, Evans told Fox News.

Evans has spent countless hours this summer building coffee tables and side tables for people in need with the help of volunteers.

It’s a project Evans had been conceptualizing since his nonprofit – Woodworking with a Purpose – started making homemade desks for children to use during remote learning at the start of the pandemic. .

Along with donations, Evans used money he received from his small business, Evan’s Woodworking, to fund the project.

Iowa dad Nate Evans makes furniture for people in need with Woodworking with a Purpose.
(Nate Evans)

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Shortly after beginning to build offices, Evans focused on making small chests for host families. His sister was an adoptive parent, and it helped him recognize “how hard it is for kids to move into their new place with nothing,” Evans said.

The project was put on hold last year due to soaring prices for plywood and other supplies to make the furniture, but in the spring of 2022 Evans got back to work.

Even with higher than normal prices, Evans was determined to make coffee tables and end tables for families in financial difficulty.

Iowa dad Nate Evans makes furniture for people in need with Woodworking with a Purpose.

Iowa dad Nate Evans makes furniture for those in need with Woodworking with a Purpose.
(Nate Evans)

“If your neighbors needed anything, if you could help them somehow, that’s the kind of family I grew up in,” he said.

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After making the first four pieces, Evans posted them on Facebook with a simple note: “Our new project.”

He didn’t post anything else about the coins or how they would be given away.

Yet people began reaching out almost immediately to needy families who could benefit.

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When Evans, who works full-time at Des Moines Christian School in Urbandale and part-time at a local auto shop, spent at least nine hours a day in his garage making a few dozen pieces of furniture.

However, they would not have come this far without the generosity of donations.

Iowa dad Nate Evans makes furniture for people in need with Woodworking with a Purpose.

Iowa dad Nate Evans makes furniture for people in need with Woodworking with a Purpose.
(Nate Evans)

“We have been able to do so much for our community just because of the kindness of others,” he said. “That’s 24 families who have furniture they didn’t have before.”

And that’s not all. Evans said they had a list of people asking for furniture.

The goal is to make another 100 pieces this fall.

Currently, Evans says the nonprofit is run entirely from his garage, so resources, space and even time are limited.

One day, however, Evans’ dream is to earn enough money to do this full time.

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