Building Community Blog

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. 

By Lan Freitag
Leadership Giving Officer, Twin Cities Habitat

As I sat in a meeting listening to the fundraising challenges we were up against in the current fiscal year, I realized that Habitat was in the same place as many nonprofits: the need is far outpacing the resources available. I wanted to do something about it and I knew couldn’t do this myself. Without much recruiting, I had a team of 8 co-workers volunteer to help me build Habitat’s first employee giving campaign!

To hear Mike Moody talk about it, you’d think he were in heaven when he discovered the Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity ReStore six weeks ago. The ReStore, which is based in New Brighton, sells donations of building products, furniture and other housing products to the public for bargain-basement prices. Proceeds help build more Habitat homes. 

Something remarkable happened this past Wednesday, October 22nd. More than 260 women, and 3 men, gathered for the Hearth & Hope luncheon to support Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity and to hear a keynote speech by Marilyn Carlson Nelson. The luncheon raised nearly $70,000 for affordable housing that will empower women in our community and improve the lives of their families and children. The amount raised was important, but the remarkable part of the day came in the fact that so many women gathered and acknowledged the power they wield to make a difference in the lives of so many families.

From the families we serve, to the materials and resources we use to create and preserve homeownership, it takes a dedicated community to support us in our mission to eliminate poverty housing in the Twin Cities. Take a look and see how Twin Cities Habitat works, and how you can get involved!

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