Local News

'Extreme Makeover' home donations under investigation

Posted February 28, 2012
Updated March 8, 2012

Jubilee House in Fayetteville was transformed by "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" in 2011 into a place to house homeless female veterans.

— The state is reviewing whether a Fayetteville home transformed by "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" last year into a place to house homeless female veterans has collected more than $25,000 donations without a license. 

The North Carolina Secretary of State's Office said Tuesday that Barbara Marshall, who runs the Jubilee House on Langdon Street, has filed paperwork as a nonprofit but does not have a license for donations exceeding $25,000.

"A lot of that is new to me," Marshall said. "I'm not making excuses, but sometimes you have to get smart in a hurry." 

This is the latest issue for the house, which has come under scrutiny from homeless advocates, including the Salvation Army, for turning women away. 

Marshall, a 15-year Navy veteran, said she has two women and a child staying at the home, despite the fact the home can shelter up to seven women. 

Marshall has said she turned women away because some of them require clinical services for treatment like substance abuse that she cannot provide.

"If we had my way, we'd have a good, solid staff that would provide residential treatment for women who are suicidal, but right now that's not the case," Marshall said. 

Brandy Thompson, who was discharged from the Army in 2006, said she suffers from anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. She said she thought she had a bed at the Jubilee House in October but that Marshall told her she had to see mental health specialists at the hospital before she could stay at Jubilee House. 

After five days in the hospital waiting, Thompson said, Marshall denied her request to move in. 

"You have the resources to help me, to get things done that I need to get done," Thompson said. "My hopes were high for that. That was a big letdown." 

Marshall said she is getting no money from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or the government. She said that, once she gets more help and resources, she hopefully can care for homeless veterans with drug, alcohol or mental health issues.

Before the renovations to the Jubilee House, she said, she casually welcomed any women veteran in need.

"I think what has happened is what happens in any relationship. The honeymoon is over, and we've got to get smart," Marshall said. 

Jubilee House 'Extreme Makeover' home donations investigated

Although the show aired last year, people still show up delivering donations to the home.

Marshall said she stores donations in her basement and offers them to female veterans who come to the shelter, even if they aren't able to stay there.

If the state finds that Marshall did collect the donations without a license, she could face fines or administrative penalties.

On Tuesday afternoon, an informal advisory committee met to discuss the claims of women being turned away or kicked out of the home. The committee has no authority over the house. 

"All of my concerns were addressed," board member Rebekah Sanderlin said after the meeting. "I don't think there is anything shady going on." 

Board members decided to create an executive board in the coming weeks to ensure accountability. 


This story is closed for comments.

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  • Sherlock Mar 1, 2012

    If these boards were doing their job correctly there would be no problem. Remember this is her house and no one else, if she does not want anyone there it is her RIGHT..

  • gabewilliams12 Mar 1, 2012

    Two points..First the house was not for Poor Military Wives, it is for homeless female veterans. Second this house is not about President Obama. It really irks me how if the sun does not rise, it is President Obama..If a storm comes and blows down a house it is President Obama. If your car dont crank, it is President Obama. With that being said. This is Barbara Marshals cross to bare. She should be made to be removed from that house and get someone in there to run it as a shelter that it was built for. People need to place the blame on the right person. Mrs Obama was there because she believes in the military and the struggles that they face.

  • barbstillkickin Feb 29, 2012

    This house was put up because Mrs. Obama wanted it. She wanted to show her concern for the poor military wives that have been beaten and are on drugs. Well they need more people to run it and Obama needs to pay for it. She wanted it now she need to finance it like all the rest of the country. When you want to have a help house running you have to take the financial responsibility to run it. More Campaign stuff that is costing us more money. It is a great idea for the women who need it but I can not keep paying more taxes for all of these ideas. I AM BROKE. BUCK HAS ALREADY STOPPED HERE AND TAKEN ALL MY MONEY.

  • BEACH Feb 29, 2012

    Pris. what happen to other people. Extreme Make-over build a house in Lexington NC for a teacher that had cancer about 3 years ago, She lived in the house and she passed away last month but her house was nothing like this one. The house is out of place there.

  • priscillasimpson Feb 29, 2012

    This house may be too much to handle considering the property taxes and insurance. This house is valued at over $400,000, can't imagine what insurance cost, electric bills and heating bills. The group from Extreme Makeover should have considered the neighborhood before building such an extreme monster of a house in this neighborhood. The neighbors have to be upset. But then, I think that we all just got caught up in the moment without before or after thoughts.

    What has happened to other people that have had Extreme Makeovers?

  • ccsmith1902 Feb 29, 2012

    sidecutter: This is not about Obama. Get over it!

  • daisy Feb 29, 2012

    I hope some of the organizations already serving the homeless populations in Fayetteville can offer Ms. Marshall some help in wading through the 501C3 murky waters.

    Having a deep desire to help others is a wonderful thing but trying to do it through the nonprofit channels can be frustrating. Sounds like the Extreme Makeover show was a mixed blessing. Too much, too soon.

  • allisonpayne Feb 29, 2012

    Please get this woman out of there and get a qualified ethical person to use the facility for the intended use. She should be totally ashamed of herself.

  • BubbaDuke Feb 29, 2012

    A license is another government tax on people. If I was this woman I'd stop helping people, forget about donations and just enjoy the home.

    In working with the homeless, we often have people who aren't homeless and don't need help show up when we hand out clothes and shoes. We've had women park their Cadillacs across the street and walk over to our donation tables and leave with tote bags full of clothes that were donated for the homeless. These people don't need them, they just want something for nothing and they don't care about anyone else. These women are the kind of people who are complaining about not being able to get a room in Marshall's house.

  • sidecutter Feb 29, 2012

    Maybe Mrs. Obama will bring her some money.