As Real Estate Investors, at times our emphasis on building our businesses can be so focused that we forget about the communities that make up our customer base. Helping to build strong sustainable communities should be our focus as well. A strong community is a catalyst for stable local economies and stable economies are good for business!
Last month, volunteers from NICIA took part in a local community outreach project with Habitat for Humanity (our first for 2013).
About Habitat For Humanity
Habitat is a nonprofit, ecumenical Christian ministry founded on the conviction that every man, woman and child should have decent, safe and affordable place to live. Habitat builds with people in need regardless of race or religion and welcomes volunteers and supporters from all backgrounds.
- Homeowners and volunteers build under trained supervision. Individuals, corporations, faith groups and others provide vital financial support.
- In the U.S., Habitat for Humanity lends no-profit, no-interest mortgage loans to its beneficiary families.
- On a global scale, Habitat’s traditional model is not always possible.
About The Project
The Habitat home was located in our very own Gary, Indiana. NICIA members showed up bright and early to lend their talents to complete the renovation of this home for a deserving family from our local community. We were not alone in our efforts and had the pleasure of working alongside members of the, also local, Embassies of Christ Church. The beneficiary of the home, a devout member of the church, was also present.
Though Habitat for Humanity is renowned for its many charitable services, homebuilding is more than just a day’s work. Most often, builds take place over the course of several
weeks and in several different stages. Volunteers may participate in any stage of the build whether it is landscaping, roofing, raising walls, or painting. Recently, NICIA members took part in painting a home.
Working with fellow members of the community was an awesome experience. Similar to Habitat for Humanity, Embassies of Christ Church (EOC) offers a transitional living program for its members who have fallen victim to financial hardship during this period of economical instability. Dr. V. Stewart explained that EOC buys and rehabs its own homes in which program participants can live rent free. Just as Habitat requires of its beneficiaries, EOC requires that its own beneficiaries take financial literacy courses like those offered through Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University.
These courses teach the principles of responsible homeownership. Beneficiaries are then allowed to stay in the homes provided for them for a period of 18 to 24 months. Once this period is over, they are encouraged to take the new financial management tools and knowledge that they’ve learned to seek homeownership in their communities. EOC’s program is a testament to the passion and spirit of our community members and should be an inspiration to us all to become more involved in the local communities we serve.
Fortunately, there will be more opportunities for all of our members to volunteer with this wonderful organization in the near future. If you are interested in participating, be sure to check the NICIA Website regularly for updates on upcoming events.