Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Habitat for Humanity: Hundreds of Helping Hands

By Angela Bevacqua, Senior Communications Specialist

One of the inspiring stories that came from Colorado Gives Day was Habitat for Humanity’s campaign to “raise a house” for a family in need.

Habitat for Humanity of Metro Denver rallied 278 people to donate for building materials to construct a safe, healthy home for a family of four. The final tally? A stellar $95,358 raised, including the FirstBank Incentive of more than $2,200. Construction materials for a single home typically cost $85,000.

I’ve always admired this organization’s mission and their belief that “every man, woman and child should have a decent, safe and affordable place to live.” What I didn’t know is that Habitat works in communities around the world—selecting prospective homeowners, organizing volunteers, and coordinating home building.

The staff at Community First Foundation was invited to help build the “Colorado Gives Day house” recently, along with the homeowner Amanda. I was both excited and intrigued to see how our office-dwelling staff would be able to wield hammers and saws to make a contribution… 

Paul fires up the drill.
Here are some of our thoughts about the day:

“The Habitat supervisors were amazing at showing us what to do, and seemed to just sense when we needed help. But I’ll admit, I was pretty sore by the end of the day!”  Paul Mulligan, Donor Support Specialist

Cheryl, Caitlin and Dana get busy.

“It was an amazing experience. We hammered on siding, cut insulation…and most of us used a drill and other power tools for the first time. I loved working side-by-side with Amanda, the homeowner, and my co-workers to create something.”  Caitlin Jenney, Communications Manager

No fear of heights here:
Bryce and Rennetta up high.
“I was so impressed by the dedication and commitment of Habitat homeowners—the process can take more than a year and they are required to put in more than 200 hours of physical labor by building their Habitat house and the houses of others. Amanda was working right there with us and was so grateful for the help.”  Rennetta Lueckenhoff, Executive Assistant

The building crew.
From the staff at Habitat, the volunteers, to the generous donors, it truly takes many hands to eliminate homelessness.

Learn more about Amanda and the program in an article in the Denver Post's YourHub.