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Habitat for Humanity of Southwest, Missouri, Inc.

Partnering With The Community

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Habitat for Humanity builds homes. But with many moving parts, there’s much more to the organization than just building houses. 

 

Habitat for Humanity’s activities include:

• A construction and home repair company comprised of a five-person construction team that manages and coordinates volunteers,

• A volunteer organization, 

• A mortgage company that holds the lien on more than 80 homes in the Springfield market, 

• A Neighborhood Revitalization program partnering with the Woodland Heights neighborhood, 

• ReStore - where donated items are sold to cover expenses.

 

Home building and repairs 

A common misconception is that Habitat gives away homes. While it’s true that volunteers supply most of the labor, the homebuyers are required to partner with Habitat to help build the home and, when it’s finished, they make payments to Habitat for the home. The advantage is that the owners walk into the house with equity already in their pocket, having paid quite a bit less than the home appraisal. 

 

“Everyone deserves a decent place to live,” says Executive Director Larry Peterson. “Habitat’s unconventional path to homeownership provides stability and can put families on the road to self-reliance. An affordable mortgage allows low-income families to build a better life. And by providing home repairs for homeowners, we can help families stay in their homes with dignity and pride.”

 

Neighborhood Revitalization

Neighborhood Revitalization works to improve the quality of life for a community by listening to the goals and aspirations of residents, making a plan and bringing in partners to accomplish the goals.

 

Habitat is partnering with residents in the Woodland Heights neighborhood to help elevate that community. Together they reach out to churches, civic organizations, businesses, schools and anyone else that would like to help the neighborhood set and reach goals. 

 

Residents of the neighborhood are heavily involved in every aspect of the revitalization. “We’re the catalyst,” says Peterson, “Although Neighborhood Revitalization is a Habitat program, it’s not really ours. It belongs to the neighborhood.” 

 

New partners welcome

From home construction to neighborhood revitalization to the ReStore, Habitat for Humanity is an organization that relies heavily on volunteers and donations. “We’re always on the lookout for faith organizations, businesses, schools, and organizations that want to volunteer,” says Peterson. They also count on donations, whether to the ReStore or financial contributions. “We couldn’t operate the ReStore if it weren’t for the people who donate furniture and appliances and building materials. And of course, our loyal shoppers!”

 

Financial contributions can be made in the form of:

• One-time contributions of any size;  

• Corporate sponsorships, for home builds, home repair projects or fundraising events;

• Sustaining donations through the “HopeBuilder Club” that can be set up in any amount and are given on a recurring basis through a bank account;

• Legacy donations, in which Habitat for Humanity is named in the donor’s will; or 

• Contributions to the Habitat Endowment.  

 

On January 4, 2018, the Springfield affiliate of Habitat for Humanity will turn 30 years old. Since its inception, the organization has either built or renovated more than 570 homes, providing shelter for more than 1100 people in Greene, Christian, and Webster counties by helping people gain strength, stability, and self-reliance. 

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