‘Waterfalls throughout the building’: Frozen pipes devastate Eastpointe program for young mothers

Gianna’s House in Eastpointe asks community for donations

EASTPOINTE, Mich. – A Metro Detroit program that helps struggling young mothers desperately needs help from the community.

Gianna’s House in Eastpointe is a home for pregnant young women who need care during and after pregnancy. It opened three years ago in a former convent next to Saint Veronica’s Church.

Mother nature, though, has caused significant damage. Freezing pipes sent waterfalls throughout all four floors of the building.

Joella Bush, the executive director for Gianna’s House, showed Local 4 the damage. Pipes had burst in eight or nine different places. Hundreds of gallons of water went from the top third floor to the basement.

“It was described by the Eastpointe Fire Department as waterfalls throughout the building,” Bush said.

Bush believes an aging boiler is to blame, saying it couldn’t get enough heat to the third floor.

While the damage to the building is devastating, so is the loss of donations. Hundreds of diapers, baby wipes, formula, and more have to be thrown out.

“Pampers, wipes, formula -- if they need a car seat, pack and play, blankets -- all of that stuff was lost,” Bush said.

Insurance will help with building repairs, but it won’t cover the cost of everything.

“We’re definitely concerned if we can afford to come back from this,” Bush said. “And if so, how long will it take for it to happen?”

Click here to help Gianna’s house, either financially or with donations.

About the Author:

Nick joined the Local 4 team in February of 2015. Prior to that he spent 6 years in Sacramento covering a long list of big stories including wildfires and earthquakes. Raised in Sterling Heights, he is no stranger to the deep history and pride Detroit has to offer.