rv industry

RV Women's Alliance and their Fun Drab to Fab Project!

So, because we’re a grassroots organization, we’ve only–we’re very young, we’re only about two years into it, and 2020 came along. And we had all these things, all these events planned. And then COVID hit, so we kind of went dormant. And we decided, well, what are we going to do? So, one day, I woke up and for some strange reason, I decided, “Hey, I think we can flip an RV. And let’s call it Drab to Fab.” I mean, it literally happened that fast. It’s been a whirlwind. So, within six weeks, we not only had to get an RV, but come up with a marketing plan, come up with, you know, the build schedule and everything else like that. And if anyone’s done a reno project, six weeks with these are all volunteers working full time jobs beyond this, it’s quite a feat. But we were able to pull it off, and what you see behind us is a half torn apart RV getting ready to be build back up again.

Welcome to week two of the demo. We’ve got a great group of ladies in here helping finishing ripping out the interior. We’ve got the windows out. And we’re working on the roof.

This is good. We’re currently working on the roof. How’s it going? It’s a lot of work. Right now, we are laying the flooring throughout the RV. And then we will also be laying some heated floors for the bedroom. So, last week, we had I don’t know, maybe 12 people here, which was amazing. And it was so fun, and all the ladies that we’ve talked to after said, “I can’t wait to come back. I’ve learned new things. I want to go home and tear some stuff up and just build something now.” So, we’re all learning new skill sets that we never knew we could do or wanted to do, but we’re having fun doing it.

Today’s our fourth week of the project. What we’re doing is we’re getting volunteers from around the industry. Doesn’t matter what your job is. As long as you work in the RV industry, we welcome you here. It’s a great place
to meet new friends, learn new skills. I know me for one, you know, what do I know about renovating an RV? Very little. But four weeks into it, what do I know now? A lot more. And through it, I’ve also met a lot of amazing women that do different jobs throughout the industry, so the networking through this project alone is fantastic. Oh, it’s been amazing. I mean, as far as the–girls go, we’ve kind of–you know, we have our core, but like being here, I’ve met so many other ladies that I probably would not have met outside of this project. So, it’s just been fun getting to know them. And even, you know, communicating outside of this project, so it’s exciting to see, you know, how many more relationships, you know, we’ll build and continue to build throughout the process.

Part of RVWA’s mission is to have it be an organization where women feel welcome, they have a place to turn. It’s a community that, when they do start working in this industry, they’re automatically, you know, a part of something great, and they feel comfortable.

female: So, I’ve only been in the industry for almost a year, so I am brand new to the RV industry. But what I found is that there’s a lot of women who are really excited, and want to make a change, and want to make an impact. And it’s nice coming into an industry that from an outsider’s perspective, I know that it’s male dominated. But coming into it as a newbie, I see that there’s a lot of women who want to just make something awesome and impact the industry in a lot of cool ways.

female: So, Drab to Fab is 100% women built. But that being said, that we do allow men to come because we have a lot of manufacturers. We have 38 sponsors right now and continue to grow, so these are products throughout the industry. We invite anybody from those companies to come and advise on the products because who knows their products better than them? So, if we’re doing a solar panel, or if we’re going air conditioning, or the roofing, or something like that, and they want to come and watch and advise, you know, “Hey, we’ve got a quick fix
to that. Or hey, if you do it this way, it’s going to be a lot faster and easier for you,” then we welcome that advisement. Because you know, we’re learning. And that’s the wonderful part about it. It doesn’t mean we can’t learn from men or other women. It’s a community thing.

female: With this unit, I think we all came together and said, “What are the things that we want to see? What are the things that aren’t being done in the industry yet? And how can we apply them to kind of push the envelope and make something really new and special and exciting?” ¬†COVID inspired us to take this RV and make it the ultimate work from the road vehicle. So, it came with a bunk in the front, and so what we’ve done is totally torn out that bunk, and we’re going to turn it into an office space. So, what you’re going to get is that environment where you have a really great dedicated office, an up to date kitchen, and a heated bedroom with heated floors, kind of swanky little place to live, and go out on the road, and work.

At the end of this project, when it’s all done on March 3, the RV Hall of Fame has donated space for us to do a big reveal. And we’re going to invite all of the workers, all of our sponsors to come and actually see the unveiling of the RV go in, see it, touch it, feel it, be proud of being a part of this. And then it goes immediately to a raffle. And the proceeds are going to go to the RV Women’s Alliance to help us fund some other programs for women in the industry.