2019 Fall Newsletter

BUILDING MOMENTUM IN WEST GROVE

We are making great progress at our West Grove community. Roads and stormwater management systems are complete and ready for construction to begin. We are now officially accepting families into the program, and are very excited about providing 40 families with the opportunity for homeownership in a newly constructed home. We have been able to provide these opportunities thanks to our partnership with the USDA which offers low-interest mortgages for families who qualify. Families of one to four members must earn between $43,700
and $69,900, and families from five to eight members must earn between $57,000 and $92,250.

Habitat will bring to bear all of its resources, volunteers and generous contributions from the community, along with USDA’s extremely low-interest rates, to make these homes affordable to families who want to invest in their future. If you or someone you know is interested in applying for a home, be sure to visit www.hfhcc.org/westgrovesite to download and complete the application. If you have any questions while completing the application, our Director of Family Services, Bobette Meeter can be reached by email at bobette@hfhcc.org or by phone at 610-384-7993, extension 14.

SETTLEMENTS

We welcomed three new families to the Cambria Terrace neighborhood in July. Courtney, Rachel, and Daniel & Dawn moved in after a long process of finance classes and “sweat equity,” helping to build the houses they now call home. Your generous support—prayers, volunteer time and financial gifts—made it possible for these three hard-working families to achieve their dreams. On their behalf, please accept our sincere appreciation!

GOLF OUTING SUCCESS

 

After a rain postponement, we were thankful for such a beautiful day at the 16th annual Driving to Build Golf Outing on July 15th. 87 golfers joined us on the greens of French Creek Golf Club for some friendly competition. With added longest drive, straightest drive, closest to the pin and chipping contests, we kept participants on their “A” game. Thanks to sponsors, donors, and players, Habitat was able to raise $32,000 that will support our mission of building decent, affordable housing in Chester County. An enormous thank you to all that came out to make such a successful event and a wonderful day!

THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS
Bentley Systems Inc. | The Bilotta Family | Ted Peters, Bluestone Financial
Institutions Fund | The Bourbon Trailblazers | Brandywine Valley Heating
and Air Conditioning | Martin J. Cappelletti Custom Builders Inc.
Communications Test Design, Inc. | Fox Rothschild LLP | Rick & Robin
Gasloli | Gary & Kitty Knox | MacElree Harvey, Ltd. | Phillips Mushroom
Farms | PJM Interconnection | Rainer & Company | T.O. Epps & Associates
Viwinco, Inc. | WSFS Bank | The Law Office of Jack Wuerstle

THRIVENT HOUSE TAKES SHAPE

 

Thanks to the generous support from the Chester County faith community and Thrivent Financial, a hard-working family will soon be able to call this house, home. We are very close to meeting Thrivent’s dollar for dollar match challenge but still need the prayers, volunteers and donations from local churches. Westminster Presbyterian, St. Paul’s Lutheran, Calvary Lutheran and First Presbyterian Church of West Chester have all signed on as Thrivent partners. If you belong to any of these churches, please consider donating to help us meet our challenge. If your church is not yet a partner, contact us and we are happy to meet to provide information about this mission and outreach opportunity. Thrivent is not-for-profit insurance and financial organization serving the Christian community. More information on the services Thrivent offers can be found at www.thriventfinancial.com.

JOEY ANN FOWKES JOINS THE FUNDRAISING TEAM

Habitat for Humanity of Chester County is pleased to announce that Joey Ann Fowkes has been appointed Chief Advancement Officer. Fowkes brings a wealth of nonprofit experience in the management of development programs, charitable gift planning, and major donor relations. Most recently, she was Director of Charitable Estate Planning for the American Heart Association (AHA) for a five-state region including Pennsylvania. There, she served as the organization’s expert in planned giving, helping donors to make significant charitable gifts that ensure a meaningful personal legacy.

“We are thrilled to welcome Joey to our team at this pivotal and exciting point in our history,” says Andrew Signore,
President, Board of Trustees. “Her experience, enthusiasm and mission-focus will be a great asset as we celebrate 30 years of service to our community and move forward to have an even greater impact in the coming years.” Fowkes will work with Board members, philanthropic and community leaders, donors, volunteers, and friends to secure the funds needed to increase the organization’s impact on the growing need for affordable housing in Chester County.

Fowkes is an alum of Alaska Pacific University where she graduated Summa cum laude with a Bachelor’s in Organizational Management. Professionally active, her membership activities include Partnership for Philanthropic Planning of Greater Philadelphia; Financial Service Providers (FSP); Chester County Estate Planning Council; and Montgomery County and Philadelphia Estate Planning Councils (PEPC) where she also served as Committee CoChair for The Women’s Initiative.

3 WAYS THE RESTORE MAKES A DIFFERENCE

  1. The ReStore Helps Families: The money raised by the ReStore helps families build a decent and affordable place to call home. When the items you donate to the ReStore are sold, the profits help families achieve the strength, stability and independence they need to build a better future.
  2. The ReStore Helps the Environment: The ReStore diverts hundreds of tons from landfills each year, accepting hard-to-dispose-of items including new and used furniture, appliances and surplus building materials. In many cases, free pickup service is provided for large items.
  3. The ReStore Provides Low-Cost Home Solutions: The ReStore is a unique blend of part home improvement store, part home goods store, and part resale store. Each ReStore has a wide selection that changes often. You benefit because you get fantastic new and gently used items below retail prices.

FOND FAREWELLS AND MORE NEW FACES

Dan Allard joined the Habitat construction team in 2014 after volunteering on the site. The team quickly saw that his patience, great skill and attention to detail would make him a perfect fit for a leadership position. We can’t thank Dan enough for all the time and hard work he put into building with us over the years. We will miss his quiet but always friendly face and wish him the best of luck on his new adventure!

Milby Thorington is one of the newest members of the Habitat team as a Construction Lead. Milby attended Northeastern University graduating in 2019. He started his career in fraud management and risk analysis, but changed direction to construction in 2011 and joined Habitat in July of this year. We are excited to have Milby on board as we start building at the West Grove construction site!

Jim Marshall is another great addition to the construction site, also joining Habitat in July. Jim retired in 2015 after teaching chemistry and coaching various sports for 33 years. He grew up working on construction sites with his father and retained that passion throughout his career. After retirement, Jim led construction projects with disaster relief teams and Habitat for Humanity of the Middle Keys. We are thrilled to have Jim bring his experience to the Coatesville site!

 

3rd Annual Building A Thirst Brewery Ticket Book Fundraiser

We are excited to have 11 Chester County breweries sign on for our 3rd annual Building a Thirst fundraiser! We will be out and about selling brewery ticket books this fall and winter, each containing tickets redeemable for a free beer at each brewery. Tickets are valid from January 1, 2020, until September 7, 2020. These books will be available during designated happy hours at each brewery leading up to the holiday season, making great gifts for the craft beer lover in your life!

Current Happy Hour Dates:

Want to be the first to know when we add another happy hour? Click here to sign up for our Building a Thirst Newsletter for updates and happy hour dates! For any additional questions, please email us at info@hfhcc.org.

Special thanks to these 3rd year participating breweries:

                            

And a warm welcome to this year’s additions!

               

Build a House…Build a Dream Contest 2020

Calling all fifth-grade builders, artists, architects, and engineers! Along with presenting sponsor Fox & Roach and Trident Charities, Habitat for Humanity of Chester County is excited to announce the 17th annual Build a House…Build a Dream! contest for kids being held on March 21, 2020!

In this competition, fifth-grade students in the Delaware Valley work individually or in pairs to build their own three-dimensional, model dream homes. Students deliver their models to the Church Farm School in Exton for display and judging. Participants may drop off their models Friday March 20th between 5:00pm and 7:00pm or the morning of the contest between 8:30am and 9:00am. Students will need to be standing with their dream homes at 9:15am for our panel of judges to speak with them about their inspiration and process. There will be three rounds of judging with contestants being dismissed after each round. The top three dream homes will be announced during our awards ceremony with the top three prizes awarded to the winners. While our panel of volunteers, Habitat board members and architects in the community judge the dream homes, we will have raffles, snacks and activities for the students and their families to keep the fun going! The event ends at approximately 12:00pm after all prizes have been handed out.

More information on getting registered, contest rules and the event location can be found below!

Contest Rules and Registration Link

Though there are few rules to the contest, please be sure to keep the following rules in mind when building your model dream home:

  • Models must be three-dimensional and fit on a base no larger than 2ft x 3ft.
  • Students must prepare one written description of about 100 words or less explaining why this is their idea of a dream house and highlighting any interesting features. This paragraph will be displayed with their homes.
  • Electrical outlets will not be available.
  • The use of liquids (water, slime, etc.) is not permitted, as we want to preserve the cleanliness of our contest venue!
  • Students must be prepared to discuss their entry with contest judges.
  • Model homes will be judged on the following criteria:
    • Originality and creativity
    • Use of materials
    • Appearance and design
    • Independent effort (This is a contest for kids, not their parents!)

This free contest is open to fifth grade students in public, private, and parochial, charter, and home schools throughout the Philadelphia area. Students may participate in this event individually or with a partner. If you are registering with a building partner, you only need to submit one form, but must provide an email address and parent/guardian contact of the building partner.

Click Here to Register for Build A House…Build A Dream!

Frequently Asked Questions
  • What exactly is this contest?
    It may be easiest to think of the contest like a science fair, except instead of making a science project, students build a model home. Contestants spend time before the contest building their three-dimensional model dream home and then present it on the day of the contest along with a written paragraph as to why this is their dream home. Judges will evaluate each entry based upon originality and creativity, use of materials, appearance and design, and independent effort.
  • Who can participate in this contest?
    Any fifth-grader in public, private, charter, parochial, or homeschool (or any other type of schooling we missed) can participate!
  • Can I work in a group of three or more?
    Sorry, but you may only work individually or with one partner. We want to ensure that each team member has contributed and been fully engaged in the project, which becomes difficult with a larger group. We can also only fit so many people behind a table the day of the contest!
  • Are there any restrictions or requirements on what I can use to build my house?
    Your house must be three-dimensional and fit on a base no larger than 2ft x 3ft and are not permitted to use liquids during the presentation of your house (we want to keep the venue floors clean!). Please also know that electrical outlets will not be made available.
  • Do I need to be present for the contest?
    Yes, the contestant that builds the house must be there to present their model to the judges. If working in a pair and one contestant is unable to make it, you may present the home with only one contestant present.
  • Can I drop my child off at the contest and pick them up later?
    All children must be accompanied by an adult for the duration of the contest.
  • Can I bring my other children to this event?
    Absolutely! Even though the contest itself is only open to fifth graders, the whole family can attend. While contestants receive raffle tickets, a light snack, and are eligible for prizes, there will be food for purchase and activities for the rest of the family!

Volunteer for the Event

Build a House…Build a Dream would not be a successful event without the help of an amazing group of volunteers! Below is a list of volunteer opportunities available. To sign up, please complete the information below and return to Latifa Raheem, Outreach Coordinator, via mail or email by March 1. You will receive confirmation when your form is received. Questions? Call 610-384-7993, ext. 15. Volunteers must be 15 years of age or older.

Fields marked with an * are required

Location and Helpful Links

 

Church Farm School logo

 

The contest will take place in the Pavilion located on Church Farm School’s campus on Saturday, March 21, 2020. Church Farm School (CFS) is located at 1001 Lincoln Highway, Exton.

Church Farm School is a day and boarding college preparatory school for boys in grades 9-12 offering a competitive, affordable and personalized education in Chester County, PA. Learn more about Church Farm School at www.gocfs.net.

  • Curriculum Guide for Teachers
    There are many ways for teachers to incorporate Build a House into their curriculum. This helpful sheet offers some tips for integrating the contest into your lesson plans for a variety of different subjects.
  • Event Description
    See this document for complete contest details and guidelines.
  • Contest Flyer
    Help us spread the word! Bring this flyer into your school or show it to your favorite fifth grader!
  • Habitat Videos
    Can’t quite find the words to explain Habitat’s mission to children? You’ll find plenty of videos on Habitat International’s YouTube channel, but this short video featuring a Habitat homeowner’s charismatic child is our favorite!
  • Quick Clip of Last Year
    Check out Bill Henley talking about the contestants from last year’s contest.

Build A House…Build A Dream 2020 Registration

Fields marked with an * are required

 

Participants will receive a confirmation email within 2 business days of registering. As we get closer to the event, you will receive an email with final details. It is important that you add becki@hfhcc.org to your email contacts, as our .org email addresses oftentimes get sent directly to your email’s spam folder.

There will be a photographer on the premise who will be taking event photos. By entering this contest, parents and guardians are allowing photographs of their children to be taken and used for publicity and/or news purposes.

Entries will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis, as space constraints may limit the amount of entries accepted. The deadline to register is March 1.

Home Dedications set for September 14th

Join us for Habitat home dedications!

We invite you to help us welcome three families to the neighborhood. For months they have been taking financing classes and putting in “sweat equity” by volunteering at the construction site. After a dedicated journey, they can finally call these houses homes. Visit our Facebook even page to RSVP and for more information.

Join us September 14, 2019
At 9:00 AM at
320 Community Lane
Coatesville, PA 19320