"Our own Rick Damato has been involved in Habitat for many years and was instrumental in getting the magazine-and BNP Media-on board," says Jill Nash, Roofing Contractor publisher. "We are excited that the Jimmy Carter Work Project is being held in our own back yard and we look forward to contributing to this worthy cause."
Founded in 1976, Habitat for Humanity International's goal is no less than to eliminate substandard housing from the planet. The organization is committed to straightforward principles:
Sweat equity makes every homeowner a partner.
No-interest, no-profit loans qualify more homeowners.
A revolving fund generates capital for future homes.
Twenty-eight years later, Habitat works through a network of affiliates in over 3,000 communities across the United States and in 100 countries around the world.
Event DetailsIn 1984, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, joined with Habitat for Humanity to launch the Jimmy Carter Work Project, a weeklong "blitz build." Over the years, the work project has been held in many cities across the United States, such as Anniston, Ala., LaGrange and Valdosta, Ga., and overseas in South Africa, Korea, the Philippines, and in 2004, Mexico.
The 2005 Jimmy Carter Work Project in Detroit will be a six-day blitz build event that will result in the construction of over 225 new homes for partner families in need in virtually every county in the state of Michigan. The two primary cities hosting the event are Detroit and Benton Harbor. Detroit will blitz build 30 houses in the six-day event; Benton Harbor will do 20. In addition, 68 other cities, representing every county across the state will construct at least one home, or partner with neighboring affiliates to construct at least one home.
The premier sponsors of 2005 JC WP are Whirlpool Corp., Masco Corp., The Dow Chemical Co., Lowe's, Great Lakes Capital Fund and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority. Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm will serve as JCWP 2005 honorary chair along with co-chairs Jeff Fettig, chairman of the board and CEO of Whirlpool Corp.; and Alan Barry, president and chief operating officer of Masco.
Rebuilding NeighborhoodsTim Hudson, development director for Habitat for Humanity Detroit, recently met with representatives of Roofing Contractor and some of the other BNP Media publications donating to the event. He explained how BNP's magazines will contribute volunteers and went over logistics for the week of the build. Hudson noted that HFH Detroit has made provisions for 10 percent of all donations to the JCWP to go overseas to help provide shelter for the tsunami victims.
According to Hudson, the typical Habitat homeowner in Detroit is a single mother with multiple children who has a low-paying job but can't afford a home. But the process benefits more than just individual homeowners and aims to uplift the entire city. Not simply a lone house constructed amid a declining neighborhood, there will be 30 houses that are part of an overall plan to develop several hundred homes spanning many neighborhoods. Playgrounds, watch groups, community centers and neighborhood counseling are also part of the concept. HFH Detroit already has developed several homes in the area and has long-term plans for many more. Equally important, other groups are contributing or working with HFH Detroit to refurbish existing homes in the area.
More Help NeededAt the meeting, Hudson also made a plea for more help with the JCWP, in terms of in-kind donations of both products from manufacturers as well as skilled labor from contractors. Many building products are still needed, including:
Site concrete material and labor
Roofing material (paper and shingles)
Decking and OSB
Electrical material and labor
Plumbing material and labor
Furnace, ductwork, other heating material and installation labor
Drywall material and labor
Carpeting material and installation labor
These items are needed on a 1,150-square-foot ranch-style home, new construction. Floor plan includes three or four bedrooms, living room, dining area, kitchen, single bath, and a full basement.
Any and all levels of participation are appreciated, but Hudson stresses that it would be most helpful if companies would sponsor work on multiple houses. A larger commitment increases sponsorship recognition opportunity/visibility and minimizes worksite logistical concerns. Potential donors of labor should be aware that the value Habitat places on its in-kind contribution is equal to the amount Habitat would normally pay for the work to be completed. Please contact Maureen Malane, HFH Detroit's manager of gifts in-kind, at email@example.com or 313-521-6691, ext. 106.