Building Community Blog

Thanksgiving day is an invitation to think about all that we’re thankful for in our lives. My family has a tradition of writing something in a “Thankful Book” on Thanksgiving,  as well as other holidays. So I thought creating a short Thankful Book for everyone who works at Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity would be a good way of sharing our blessings.

On Saturday, November 22, Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity celebrated with homebuyers, sponsors, and community members the dedication of two new homes. The crowd of nearly forty people gathered at the new home of Amina Hiliye, Said Farah, and their five children in Coon Rapids. The Brooklyn Park home of Sadia Hashi and her four children was also dedicated during the ceremony.

wow_truck_imageBy Mark Turbak
In-Kind and Corporate Relations Sr. Associate
Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity

When Mike Sandness first heard of Twin Cities Habitat’s Veterans Initiative while volunteering on a Habitat build in Shakopee, he jumped at the chance to help. Mike, a 20 year Veteran with the Air National Guard, has long held a deep conviction in the value of serving his country and helping other Veterans. In addition to his service with the Air National Guard, Mike also volunteers for Beyond the Yellow Ribbon’s South of the River Military support group. 

On Saturday, November 15, over 75 people joined Habitat homebuyer Mai Kee Lee at 3026 Morgan Avenue in North Minneapolis to celebrate the dedication of The House that Love Built. The home was filled with energy radiating from Mai Kee, her five young children, and dozens of enthusiastic members of the sponsoring First Universalist Congregation. The dedication recognized the homebuyer’s hard work, the tremendous fundraising feat achieved by First Universalist, and the contributions of other sponsors, volunteers, and the community.

In early October the Youth Engagement team at Habitat was presented with an opportunity to work with four University of MN students to do a Habitat Awareness demonstration on campus. The four students (Seneca Thornley, Nick Tassoni, Justin Dessel, and John Turner), are all in a project management class where their assignment for the semester is to pick a project and implement it. The students chose to do one of our Hands-on Workshops in the middle of campus to raise awareness for Habitat on October 29th.

This past weekend the Habitat ReStore was featured at the Midwest Home Show. The show gave the ReStore the opportunity to introduce itself to tons of new people, both at the show, as well as in all the TV coverage of the ReStore at the show. Below you'll find an interview with a ReStore customer, but if that isn't enough to get you to come by and see what we have to help you with your home improvement projects, read on.

Way to go, Minnesota!

Across the state, 120,664 gifts were made to local non-profit organizations and schools, totaling $18,316,626.42 on Minnesota's annual day of giving! We're still tallying the numbers, but it's safe to say that over 800 people made a gift to support Habitat's work in the Twin Cities. Thank you so much for your generosity!

Whether building one Habitat for Humanity home or trying to revitalize an entire neighborhood, the work goes better when more people help. This all-in-together approach is paying off right now in St. Paul’s Frogtown and Rondo neighborhoods, one area where Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity has focused efforts since the foreclosure crisis. In the past three years, working in just a small cluster of blocks, Habitat for Humanity volunteers have built or rehabbed 11 homes and repaired 11 existing homes through A Brush with Kindness. The positive impact is noticeable, and both hope and neighborhood pride are on the rise. There are far fewer vacant, boarded-up homes than there were at the height of the recession.

All this work is thanks to an outpouring of support from businesses with strong St. Paul ties, local churches, foundations, and residents passionate about seeing their neighborhood become a better place to live. On the corporate side, both Ecolab and PCL were primary sponsors on Habitat homes in St. Paul in 2014. Holy Hammers, a faith coalition that's contributed more than $1M to Twin Cities Habitat's work over the years sponsored a third home. And the Builders Circle, made up of individuals who donate more than $1,000 annually to Twin Cities Habitat, sponsored a fourth home in the neighborhood revitalization zone. 

All Posts Next