A few years ago, Audua watched an A Brush with Kindness presentation during a Jordan Area Community Council board meeting, which she was a member of. She learned that this paint and repair program provides health and safety repairs that can help families maintain a safe and stable home.
“My kitchen was a wreck; the bathroom wasn’t functional and had mold,” Audua recalls. The exterior of her home also needed attention and much needed maintenance. It seemed as though the A Brush with Kindness program might be a perfect fit, so she applied. Her family met the programs criteria, and was eventually accepted!
Toya has lived in her home for 28 years, and after years of giving she's finally getting the opportunity to receive.
Guest blog by Lillie Taggart
Sr. A Brush with Kindness Volunteer Facilitator
Yesterday, in introducing my work I said, “I serve as an AmeriCorps member at Habitat for Humanity. Today we demolished a bathroom!” Blank and somewhat saddened eyes stared back. I realized the issue and relieved their worry: “I serve on the home repair side!” I explained. The home repair side that, all too often, people don’t know about.
Some people think Habitat for Humanity is about helping people less fortunate than you. It’s really about looking past finances, seeing the humanity we all share, and then building a community with the assets we each have. Hank Pohl exemplifies this.
Guest blog by Shannon Twiss
Although it’s hard to believe given the weekend’s weather, spring is just around the corner! This May, we will be completing a second set of chore services as a pilot for our new Age In Place program. Last fall, we partnered with nine senior homeowners to complete chore services. Forty-two volunteers provided 180 hours of leaf-raking, garden clean-up, pruning and yard clean-up.
This spring, we will be doing similar work as in the fall, as well as helping homeowners prepare their gardens for planting.
Joe Felion is one of several AmeriCorps members that have transitioned to a Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity employee. He currently is a Site Supervisor for the A Brush with Kindness program, which is a home repair program focusing on keeping aging homeowners in their homes. Joe lives life in the moment, but looking back at his work and life experiences, it all makes perfect sense.
It was a summer Kathleen and Kyle will never forget. Without knowing each other, they had joined a regular volunteer crew working on a Habitat home repair project. They met at the top of a roof while ripping out shingles. They went on a date. They fell in love. Eight years later, in the fall of 2017, they were married.
Cindy is a people person. She understands human behavior and recognizes that “we all have a story. Or two. Or three.” In her job, Cindy listens to A Brush with Kindness homeowners’ stories and works with them to write a positive chapter.
Cassandra loves her block in the Phillips neighborhood of Minneapolis. She bought her home in 2002, and liked that it was close to everything—to her studies at the University of Minnesota, and to her job at Ameriprise in downtown Minneapolis. She has a long-term tenant upstairs, which makes it more affordable.
“I love my neighbors, and I’m very lucky to live in my neighborhood,” Cassandra says.