Month: October 2016

 

Progress on Leeside Drive

clearing-at-leeside-croppedWe’re making real progress out in Birch Bay, thanks largely to the generosity of our supporters. On Monday, Mike Peetoom – owner and operator of Mike Peetoom Construction LLC – brought one of his earth movers out to the site and got to work. He scraped grass and topsoil and dug the trenches for the foundation. A lifelong Whatcom County resident, Mike was happy to be able to help. “I’m a dirt guy,” he said, grinning. “If you want me to swing a hammer, I’m worthless.”

You Don’t Have to Swing a Hammer to Help Build a House

mike-roberts-john-paradis-john-moon-2Like Mike, John Paradis of Umpqua Bank, supports Habitat generously. He served on our Board of Directors for 10 years and now serves as the Co-Chair of our Homebuyer Selection Committee. “I believe in what Habitat’s doing,” he says. “I’m all about affordable housing. And we’ve got some really great [homebuyers] we’ve been able to work with.” Today he presented us with a $4000 check from the Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation for the Leeside project. Women Build and Youth United Build teams will soon begin constructing the Ortiz-Mendoza home with the family.

Celebrate Progress with Us

Join us on Sunday, October 30th at the Habitat Store from 2 to 4pm for a Permit Party to celebrate the progress we’ve made so far. We’ll have plenty of cake and inspiration to fuel us for the next phase of the project … building a house!

 

 

Local Business Owners Illustrate That Giving Is Building

Sanford, Florida / 10 MBIn Whatcom County, 42% of residents earn less than the basic cost of living. The average wage here is not enough to afford a 2-bedroom apartment. These circumstances set the stage for families living in overcrowded, substandard conditions. At Habitat for Humanity in Whatcom County, we’re trying to do something about that. We work with qualifying families to build safe, decent, affordable homes and lives beyond the oppressive grip of poverty. But we can’t do it alone. And there are so many different ways to help us build.

When You Give, You Build

paul-and-linda-teaterPaul and Linda Teater, relative newcomers to Whatcom County, exemplify the neighborly spirit of our community. They’ve long been generous promoters of the welfare of others and their gifts to Habitat continue that tradition. Owners of the local Budget Blinds franchise, they outfitted both the Van Dyken and Gutierrez homes entirely in blinds at no charge. Additionally, they’re covering our office windows here at Habitat – again, at no charge. Money we don’t spend to cover our office windows goes towards building shelter. Money the Van Dyken and Gutierrez families don’t spend to cover their windows is freed up for health care, education, and basic needs. This is the impressive impact of the Teaters’ gifts.

What Will You Build?

With the Leeside project nearing the construction phase, 3 other new builds in the works, several repair projects, and Telegraph Townhomes just around the corner, we need more help than ever to continue building strength, stability, and self-reliance through shelter. Call (360) 715-9170 and help us build today!

Work Begins in Blaine

work-party-at-leeside-10-8-16It took nearly 4 years of persistent effort, but at the end of last month we finally received a permit to begin building on the Leeside Drive lot we acquired back in 2012. We celebrated Habitat style … by rolling up our sleeves and getting to work!

Building House Number 37

This will be our 37th ground-up build in Whatcom County and we’re partnering with the Ortiz family to make it happen. The Ortiz’s joined our program in December of 2011 and have already put in over the minimum 500 hours of sweat equity before we’ve even broken ground!  They were out at the build site this past Saturday working alongside volunteers and staff to clean up the lot and remove debris.ortizs-with-volunteers-on-10-8-16

Build with the Ortiz’s

There are many more work parties to come and we’ll need all the hands we can get to help the Ortiz family finish their home in time for the 2017/2018 school year. Please contact Janet Straka at 360.715.9170 or email volunteer@hfhwhatcom.org to sign up to volunteer with Habitat. This project is led by Women Build volunteers. Habitat welcomes volunteers of all genders.

Bob Matthes: Changing Lives with Habitat

img_0572A retired engineer, Bob Matthes has volunteered with Habitat for Humanity in Whatcom County since 2009. Prior to that, he volunteered with Habitat affiliates in Missouri and Iowa, primarily on the construction site. He enjoys working in the store here, though, because there’s plenty to do year-round, rain or shine. He loves the fact that the store is able to use those perfectly good materials that might otherwise end up in a landfill. He also appreciates the employment opportunities the store provides.

Something Tangible

Bob dedicates a good amount of his time to us – the equivalent of a part-time job – and has done so for many years. When we asked him, “Why Habitat?” he had this to say:

bob-matthes“I’ve always thought of Habitat as a worthy cause and something we volunteers can be very proud of. There’s something tangible we’re producing. There’s something to celebrate several times a year.”

Safe, decent, affordable housing is indeed tangible … and definitely something to celebrate!

Changing Lives

Bob would like those considering volunteering with Habitat to know that there are plenty of opportunities beyond the build site and that, “This is really a chance to change people’s lives.” Thank you, Bob, for changing lives with us.

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