Six years ago, our water heater cracked. There was water damage to the walls and the basement floor flooded, which lead to the removal of our carpets. Luckily, the water heater was a rental and the company came in to replace it. While there, I was told to keep an eye on my 40-year-old furnace . . . because it was 40 years old.

Every winter since then, I pray that the furnace continues to work. I really have no idea what will happen when it dies. I have no savings, no credit cards. Our family pretty much lives week to week. That thought every winter, terrifies me.

At the beginning of December, a friend mentioned a post they saw on Facebook. “We are so excited to be able to give back to our community!! Share this message so the word gets out and we can help bring warmth to someone this holiday season.” A London company, M & K Climate Care, who has been in business for more than 30 years, was holding a promotion where people could nominate a family who is deserving of a free furnace.

I thought long and hard about this. I’m not one to ask for help. I’m also not one to share my life story with strangers. But . . . my family was very deserving. I wanted to nominate our family but struggled with sharing the hardships we’ve lived through the past few years. After a few days and going back and forth, I sent an e-mail.

My boys are teenagers. They have seen and experienced things while living in our house these past 9 years, that they probably shouldn’t have had to. Sure, they have a roof over their heads, food in the fridge, clothes on their backs . . . but not a lot of extras in life. Having a single mom who isn’t able to help them pay for college/university just doesn’t seem fair. They will step up and pay their way through school, just as I did growing up and someday they will realize how amazing they are for doing it themselves. I just don’t want them to have to worry about anything while they are living with me . . . and that includes waking up one cold, blustery morning to a home without heat. They deserve to be warm this winter, and all winters ahead of them.

A week before Christmas, I received an e-mail from the company. They wanted to come and talk with me, as part of the process of choosing a family to help. Even though I was sick with strep throat, Mike came to meet me and ask a few questions. He seemed genuinely concerned about me, our family and at the end of our meeting, informed me that our family had been chosen for the new furnace. I was speechless. Details of the installation date were made and this morning, Mike and his crew showed up just after 8 a.m. with a new furnace for the Harvey family.

I cannot thank M & K Climate Care enough. There are no words to explain how grateful we are for their generosity. Mike and Kevin were simply amazing, taking the time to explain things to me throughout the day. Joel and Blaine worked non-stop for six hours, installing a high-efficiency furnace in our basement. No judgments were made and for that, I am especially thankful for. My heart has grown 10 sizes today, just knowing that a local London business has given a family such an amazing gift this Christmas. My family.

Take a minute and visit their website and like them on Facebook. Their kindness and generosity will never be forgotten.