Habitat Partners with Wellington at Hershey’s Mill

This June, staff members from Wellington at Hershey’s Mill and their partner, Caring Hospice, volunteered for two days at Habitat for Humanity as part of their first community Volunteer Initiative.

These volunteer days were part of a larger effort to encourage a giving heart and spirit of service in Wellington staff and residents. Though the weather was too hot to bring residents, they participated back at Wellington by assisting in fundraising events and making gifts for incoming Habitat homeowners. In just three months, they held dress down days, bake sales, raffles, and sold t-shirt sponsorships to raise over $1,300 for Habitat’s mission.

Habitat was chosen for this partnership as a result of the efforts of Wellington employee, Sabrina Codella, who has been a Habitat homeowner herself in New Jersey since 2008. Since spending nearly 400 hours of sweat equity building her home, Sabrina went back to school, became a RN, and is now the Director of Resident Care at Wellington Court.

Ms. Codella said the idea behind the initiative, aside from bringing staff and residents together, was to alleviate the stigma that entering into a senior facility means that a person can no longer contribute to society. She said the attitude that she wanted to impress upon residents was that, “No matter what stage of life you’re in, you can give back to the community.”

We look forward to partnering with Wellington in the future and were grateful to be a part of their first community Volunteer Initiative!

West Chester Home Dedications

On Saturday, September 17, community supporters, sponsors, and dignitaries alike converged in the East End of West Chester to dedicate the final two Habitat homes in Bolmar Place. Habitat volunteers broke ground in July 2015 on the final twin of this fourteen home community at what was once the site of the blighted brownfield property. Thanks to sponsors Westminster Presbyterian Church and First Presbyterian Church of West Chester, the funds and volunteers were in place to complete the homes in less than one year!

Though this dedication marked the end of the West Chester build, it was a joyous event that included prayer and many insightful speakers, including church volunteers; Chester County Department of Community Development Director, Pat Bokovitz; West Chester Mayor, Carolyn Comitta; and Senator Andy Dinniman.

Senator Dinniman reminded the crowd “how blessed we are that God has allowed us to participate in the repair of the world,” but that ultimately, prayer must become action. Later, Mayor Carolyn Comitta presented the homeowners with “keys to the borough.” She said she views the keys as “keys to a healthy future for West Chester,” which these homeowners represent.

After the ceremony, attendees were welcomed into the homes and treated to a plethora of food and a meet and greet with the new homeowners.

We are proud of the work of the entire community throughout this West Chester build and hold a special place in our hearts for these last two homeowners. We wish them and all of our West Chester homeowners much happiness and success in their newly completed community.

Habitat for Humanity named social services nonprofit brand of the year

 

extended-volunteer-opportunitiesHabitat for Humanity has been named the “Brand of the Year” in the social services nonprofit category in the 2015 Harris Poll EquiTrend® study, an annual survey that measures the brand equity of an organization in the U.S.

This year’s study marks the first time Habitat for Humanity has been recognized as a top ranked brand in its category.

“We are deeply honored by this award and the public opinion that informs it. Each day, Habitat volunteers and sponsors worldwide partner alongside families in need of a safe and decent home to help them build a path out of poverty,” said Jonathan Reckford, CEO of Habitat for Humanity International. “We believe this award provides great validation that our vision of a world where everyone has a decent place to live is shared broadly by both our supporters and the American public.”

The announcement by the Harris Poll comes at a time of immense growth for the global nonprofit housing organization. During its 2014 fiscal year, Habitat for Humanity served more than 300,000 families — about 1.6 million people in more than 70 countries — through home construction, renovations and critical home repairs or increased access to improved shelter through products and services. Founded in 1976, Habitat’s global mission is made possible thanks to the hands and hearts of more than 2 million volunteers and the financial support of its many generous donors.

Harris Poll’s EquiTrend® study is based on the Brand Equity Index, which is comprised of three key factors—familiarity, quality and consideration—that result in a rating for each brand. For this, the 27th annual study, more than 38,000 Americans assessed more than 1,400 brands across 148 categories.

Visit harrisinteractive.com to read more about the Harris Poll EquiTrend® study.

 

 

West Grove Grant Awarded!

The Chester County Commissioners awarded a Community Revitalization Program grant of $1,111,000 to the Borough of West Grove for improvements on, and surrounding, our 6.8 acre site at Willow Street and South Guernsey Road.  These public improvements include construction of the storm water management system, storm sewer system, public water system, new street construction and widening of existing streets.  Ryan Costello, Chair, Chester County Board of Commissioners, noted, “Since 2003, more than $3.7 million in Community Revitalization Programs funds have been invested in West Grove, for water system, storm sewer and streetscape improvements.  This year’s grant of $1.1 million helps pave the way for the construction of 40 affordable homes in the Borough, and we thank Habitat for Humanity of Chester County and Borough officials for their commitment to investing in this very worthwhile project.”

West Grove rendering

 

Community Lane Homes Achieve LEED Certification!

In an effort to build more efficiently and save our future homeowners some money on their utility bills, HfHCC adopted several “green” strategies at the Cambria site in 2011.  As a result, the homes at 416, 418, 420, 422, and 424 Community Lane, completed in 2012, are now officially certified as LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold by the U.S. Green Building Council!
So what exactly does that certification mean?  LEED certification provides independent, internationally recognized, third-party verification that a building, home or community was designed and built using strategies aimed at achieving high performance in key areas of human and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.  LEED-certified homes are:
· Built to be energy-efficient, ensuring that the home can be comfortably heated and cooled with minimal energy usage;
· Individually tested to minimize envelope and ductwork leakage;
· Designed to minimize indoor and outdoor water usage;
· Predicted to use an estimated 30 to 60% less energy than a comparable home built to International Energy Conservation Code.
By earning LEED certification on these Cambria homes, HfHCC has ensured that the homes are healthy places to live and even more affordable over time for the partner families who live in them!

leed gold

 

 

Now Open-Kennett Square ReStore!

 

Habitat for Humanity of Chester County officially opened its ReStore in Kennett Square on Saturday, May 5. The ReStore is a retail store, open to the public, that sells donated appliances, furniture, clothing, cabinetry, etc.  All proceeds from the store will be used to build affordable housing in Southern Chester County.

Donations will be accepted on Saturdays in March from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Tuesday through Saturday beginning Tuesday, April 10 (9 a.m. to 4 p.m.)

Have something too big to bring yourself? We’ll come to your home and pick items up from the first floor or garage.  To schedule a pick-up, please call 610-466-1890.

 Jen Rothenberger, Kennett ReStore Manager, marks the grand opening of the new store with the help of (left to right) Anne-Marie Walters (HfHCC Board of Directors), Mike Leader (Board President), Charles Whitford (Board), Tom Brophy (HfHCC Director of Retail Operations), and Art Munson (Board).

345 Scarlet Road · New Garden Shopping Center
Kennett Square, PA 19348
(610) 466-1890
restore@hfhcc.org
Tuesday to Friday, 9-6 and Saturday, 9-4