Minnesota-based Thrivent Financial is the #1 all-time sponsor of Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity homes and in 2015 its lead is going to grow even larger.
Working through the Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity partnership, Thrivent and its members will help sponsor and build eight more Habitat homes around the Twin Cities in 2015. Thrivent's investment of more than $700,000 this year will cover a significant portion of the cost of these eight homes (and result in several more being fixed up through the expanding Thrivent Builds Repair program).
However, additional fundraising and volunteer recruitment will be needed to make sure the new houses are fully paid for and finished on time for families to buy. We are always looking for more partners to join in this work. Stephanie Nelson, who leads Twin Cities Habitat's faith-based partnerships, is the person to work with if you have a group looking for a tangible way to connect your faith to action. You can reach Stephanie at 612-305-7124.
Many Thrivent member-owners have been connected and contributing to Twin Cities Habitat's work for years (and some decades) and now there are two new ways that people can do even more for Habitat families by way of the Thrivent partnership, and it doesn't cost people any extra money at all. But it does take a few minutes.
Thrivent Choice Dollars®
Thrivent works a little differently than most financial institutions. Eligible member-owners (those 16 and older who have Thrivent life insurance, health insurance or annuities or who participate in Thrivent Financial volunteer leadership) have input into where some of Thrivent’s philanthropic dollars go through the Thrivent Choice program.
Thrivent Choice is relatively new, but that doesn’t mean it’s small. In 2013, member-owners helped direct $50 million in grants to communities across the country. Members recommend where some of Thrivent’s charitable dollars go through Voting Events and by directing Choice Dollars®.
According to Laura Dierke, director of the Thrivent Choice program, support for Twin Cities Habitat started strong and momentum is growing. In the past year, Thrivent members directed $10,000 Choice Dollars to TCHFH through this program. We love that. Our goal for 2015 is to double it to $20,000. We think this is possible because Thrivent estimates that only about a third of the people eligible to participate in Thrivent Choice currently do.
Members can help direct Choice Dollars® in two ways: specifically assigning them or by participating in Voting Events. Members who have Thrivent life insurance, health insurance, annuities, or who hold a Thrivent Financial volunteer leadership position receive Choice Dollars® to be assigned to things they support — like Twin Cities Habitat. It doesn’t cost members anything extra. To see how many Choice Dollars® you can assign, login to your MyThrivent account or call 800-THRIVENT (800-847-4836) and say “Thrivent Choice” when prompted.
Voting Events to assign extra Choice Dollars® are held periodically and are open to any member age 16 or older. Members can vote online at www.thrivent.com, by calling 800-THRIVENT and saying “Thrivent Choice,” or by returning the business reply card found in the Thrivent® magazine.
Thrivent Action Team
The other easy way to do more to help Habitat through Thrivent is by forming a Thrivent Action Team. Action Teams receive $250 grants to bring Thrivent’s mission to life by doing projects that benefit our community. Projects can include things like organizing a day of volunteering on a Twin Cities Habitat home. Every Thrivent member is eligible to lead two Action Teams per calendar year. To organize an Action Team, apply online at thrivent.com. Thrivent will send approved Action Teams a start-up kit and a $250 Community Impact Card to use as seed money for the project.
Laura says Action Teams are the newest way for members to “flex their generosity muscle” and make sure the causes they believe in get as much help as possible. All Thrivent members can create or join two charitable Action Teams each year, and apply for funding to help support the activities. For instance, Thrivent members might create an Action Team to make quilts for local Habitat families and request a grant to purchase materials.
Laura’s husband participated on one Action Team that helped fund a summer day camp for students that live in the city to learn about urban farming. His team got a grant of $250 for start-up costs and tee shirts for the campers from Thrivent. Seeing such direct results – kids excited about making a difference – really hit home. “The enthusiasm for Actions Teams is contagious,” Laura says. She expects this to become a very popular program.
To learn more about starting your Action Team, please call 800-THRIVENT and say “Fraternal” when prompted, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thrivent members who want to learn more about Thrivent Choice and Action Teams can contact Mikeya Griffin, one of Thrivent’s Managers of Community Engagement, at 651-272-8686 or email@example.com.
Directing Choice Dollars is subject to the Terms and Conditions of the Thrivent Choice program.
Insurance products issued or offered by Thrivent Financial, the marketing name for Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, Appleton, WI. Not all products are available in all states. Securities and investment advisory services are offered through Thrivent Investment Management Inc., 625 Fourth Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN 55415, a FINRA and SIPC member and a wholly owned subsidiary of Thrivent. For additional important information, visitwww.Thrivent.com/disclosures.