Building Community Blog

When you walk into the Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity ReStore in New Brighton, MN, there’s a good chance you’ll be helped by someone who was a reluctant volunteer, at first. Dick Hopkins is a long-time professional truck driver who tore a rotator cuff and injured a muscle while at work. The injuries sidelined him, possibly permanently.

Wayne Atkins was an extraordinary leader and co-founder of Twin Cities Habitat’s Entrepreneurs House, a community service project for the local entrepreneurial community. He passed away on March 11, 2014, after a long battle with cancer. In memory of Wayne, the eHouse Steering Committee and Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity have dedicated this year’s house: “The 2014 Wayne Atkins Entrepreneurs House.”

Twin Cities Habitat got an exciting donation of over 200 cookies last week! The cookies were baked by The Wayzata Girls in Action group. Wayzata Girls in Action is a group of 12-14 year old girls who do monthly service projects throughout the Twin Cities! The Tapper family founded the group last February, when both Madeline and Lindsay Tapper wanted to help improve the community and show that they care. With help from mom Holly, the girls started performing monthly service projects with other friends from the Wayzata community. 

Fix it and forget it is a popular saying, but Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity wants everyone who came to, or heard about, our annual Fix It Fair to Fix It and Remember. While volunteers helped repair small, non-functioning household items for anyone who brought them to the fair, the event also served as a way to remind people of the mission of Habitat and all the ways we carry that mission out.

Quiet and focused would be the way to describe the crew of regulars that support A Brush With Kindness (ABWK). Every Wednesday you can find them doing housing repairs that are usually a step beyond what most volunteers do with ABWK. They particularly enjoy using their carpentry skills to repair stairs, siding, decks, bathrooms, or anything else that lets them use or sharpen their skills. They love the challenges and are never afraid to take on a task.

A survey released earlier this year by the MacArthur Foundation pointed at why the need for Habitat for Humanity, and similar organizations, is greater than ever for American families today. The survey revealed that more than half of all adults have made at least one tradeoff in the past three years to cover their rent or mortgage. The tradeoffs included taking second jobs, cutting back on health care and healthy food, and moving to less safe neighborhoods.  

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