HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Generous home builders announce support of Habitat – five homes pledged to help capital region families.

Edmonton, AB — For the fifth consecutive year business leaders and dignitaries gathered to celebrate Habitat for Humanity’s work in the capital region. Christenson Developments, Landmark Group of Builders, Dolce Vita Homes, Sterling Homes in partnership with Qualico, and Tristate Signature Homes announced that they would each provide a home for the Habitat program.

“What makes a leader great is the ability to step beyond what is satisfactory to accomplish what is extraordinary,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO, Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “Each of the home builders involved with Habitat Day has demonstrated the extraordinary. Each builder that has donated in 2014 has donated at least one home previously showing that they’re committed to reinvesting in the community.”

In 2010 the three Habitat Day pioneers, Christenson Developments, Landmark Group of Builders and Rohit Group of Companies, recognized how the Habitat program transformed families’ lives. Families pay an interest-free mortgage that is never more than 25 percent of their income, and each payment they build equity in their home. The Habitat Day luncheon has since blossomed with 24 homes donated through the annual campaign – these homes help parents to provide a bright future for their children.

To date, over $6 Million in assets has been gifted to the Habitat program through Habitat Day in the Capital Region.

Habitat’s home ownership program would not be possible without the support of dedicated donors and volunteers. The sustainable Habitat program is contingent upon forward-thinking community leaders and the participation of the community at large – including donors and volunteers. Habitat relies on partnerships to serve families in need of adequate housing and is thrilled that local home builders have made Habitat Day in the Capital Region a huge success! The builder partnership has been significant in helping Habitat Edmonton to become the largest affiliate in Canada.

HfH Edmonton’s Blog: All Weather Windows holds 4th Annual Window Blitz in support of Habitat for Humanity.

Edmonton, AB – For the fourth consecutive year, the leaders of All Weather Windows (AWW) have mobilized their staff to volunteer a day to build windows for Habitat for Humanity affiliates across Canada. Staff at two plants – one in Edmonton and one in Mississauga – will provide windows for 40 Habitat homes: 20 in Western Canada and 20 in Central and Eastern Canada.

Lisa, a partner family with HFHE, expressed her gratitude. “The opportunity to partner with Habitat has changed my family in so many ways… I truly believe now that hard work does pay off and that there are such things as second chances and new starts. There are no words to explain how grateful we are to have this opportunity to partner with this amazing organization and to have this once in a lifetime opportunity.”

“All Weather Windows has been a huge supporter of Habitat for Humanity,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO, HFHE. “Habitat’s relationship with All Weather Windows began here in Edmonton and then blossomed into a relationship that has given a huge boost to Habitat affiliates across the country. Every Habitat affiliate and Habitat ReStore has been touched by the generosity of All Weather Windows. We’re so grateful to have such an amazing and generous corporate leader on the Habitat team.”

“All Weather Windows is a platinum national supporter of Habitat for Humanity and we are proud of our partnership,” said Henry Banman, Senior Vice President, All Weather Windows. “Our vision is to improve the lives of families, one family at a time. We want to thank our wonderful staff who are giving their time to build windows, volunteer on build-sites, and work at Habitat Restores across the country. We are grateful to our suppliers who also partner with us in this venture.”

HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Grande Prairie students present ginormous cheque to Habitat for Humanity.

Beaverlodge, AB — It was a special day for the Grande Prairie & District Catholic Schools (GPDCS) and Habitat for Humanity Edmonton (HFHE) as students proudly presented a cheque for $126,000 to HFHE President Alfred Nikolai. The funds will be used to build Habitat homes for two families in Fairview, Alberta. The students began raising funds for Habitat in 2013.

“Habitat is very proud of these students for their hard work, commitment and the fun they had in raising funds for us,” said Alfred Nikolai. “It is very true that the spirit of neighbour-helping-neighbour is thriving in our children. It is exciting to see that they are socially conscious at such a young age. There is a promising future ahead for the communities of Grande Prairie, Fairview and Beaverlodge.”

The GPDCS students held a variety of activities to raise the funds. It is a testament to what children are capable of accomplishing when a need arises.

“What a tremendous gift and legacy to be able to share with all of students, staff and parents, that a dream that began over a year-and-a-half ago has now been fulfilled because we all have worked together and achieved this goal as a whole school community,” said Russ Snoble, Principal, St. Mary Catholic School, Beaverlodge. “God has richly blessed the efforts of us all and we are truly thankful to God and to one another that we have not only reached, but exceeded, our goal.”

The two Fairview families selected for the Habitat program will pay an interest-free mortgage that is never more than 25 per cent of their income. This will enable them to build equity in their home and provide them with greater disposable income.

HfH Edmonton’s Blog: All Weather Windows holds Canada-wide volunteer blitz in support of Habitat for Humanity.

Edmonton, AB – For the third consecutive year, the leaders of All Weather Windows (AWW) have mobilized their staff to volunteer a day to build windows for Habitat for Humanity affiliates across Canada. Staff at two plants – one in Edmonton and one in Mississauga – will provide windows for 40 Habitat homes: 20 in Western Canada and 20 in Central and Eastern Canada. Other AWW staff were onsite at Habitat for Humanity Edmonton’s ReStore West location (16811 – 106 Ave) with a semi filled with donated windows for Habitat’s ReStore West. AWW were on hand to answer customer questions about window installation. And other AWW staff simultaneously volunteered at Habitat for Humanity Edmonton’s Neufeld Landing, currently the largest Habitat build in Canadian history.

Loreana, a partner family with HFHE who will be moving into Neufeld Landing, expressed her gratitude to the AWW staff. “I feel very fortunate to have been given the opportunity to thank each and every one of you. I know that there are many other things you could be doing on your day off, but you’ve chosen to volunteer your time,” said Loreana. “I want you to know that your generosity today has a lifelong effect on hundreds of families. You’re not only building windows for our houses – you’re helping to build the dreams of my family and so many other partner families.”

“All Weather Window has been a huge supporter of Habitat for Humanity,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO, HFHE. “Habitat’s relationship with All Weather Windows began here in Edmonton and then blossomed into a relationship that has had a profound impact on Habitat affiliates from Vancouver to Halifax. Every Habitat affiliate and Habitat ReStore has been touched by All Weather Windows. We’re so grateful to have such an amazing and generous corporate leader on the Habitat team.”

“All Weather Windows is a national supporter of Habitat for Humanity and we’re proud of our partnership,” said Henry Banman, Senior Vice President, All Weather Windows. “Our vision is to change the lives of families – one family at a time. We are also very proud of our staff across the nation who are giving their time to build windows, volunteer on build site and work at Habitat Restores across the country.”

(Photos below: an AWW team in Saskatchewan wen to volunteer earlier in the week)

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HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Brookfield Residential donates new home to wonderful family with six boys.

Edmonton, AB – Bashir and Fouzia were grateful to receive a “hand up” from Brookfield Residential as they were presented keys to their beautiful Habitat home in Edmonton’s Edgemont community. The couple will now be able to provide a promising future for themselves and their six sons. The home was pledged by Brookfield Residential during the fourth annual Habitat Day in the Capital Region.

“Bashir, Fouzia and their boys are now able to plan their future instead of just dream about it,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO, Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “When a generous company like Brookfield commits strengthening the communities where they live and work, it causes a ripple effect that touches many, many people. Others begin to ask themselves, ‘How can we better our community? How can we make it a place where dreams are realized?’ This is the significance of what Brookfield has accomplished.”

The Government of Alberta has supported Habitat’s sustainable program for many years and continues to champion affordable housing across Alberta.

“Making sure families can obtain affordable housing is a top priority for our government, which has proudly supported Habitat for Humanity to build nearly 600 home across the province,” said Municipal Affairs Minister Ken Hughes. “We rely on strong partnerships to support our affordable housing programs, and Habitat for Humanity and Brookfield Residential are to be congratulated for strengthening the Edgemont community and bringing home ownership to this family.”

Brookfield Residential has demonstrated the importance of giving back to the community in a way that will benefit families and communities years down the road.

“Brookfield Residential is honoured to have been part of providing Bashir, Fouzia and their beautiful boys with a new Habitat home. At Brookfield, our company believes in the spirit of community. We are very proud of our employees’ hard work in creating a place for Bashir and Fouzia to raise their family, and lead a happy, healthy life,” said Louise Gibson, Vice President, Operations, Brookfield Residential. “We would like to congratulate everyone involved in this project for making Edmonton one of the best cities to call home.”

Habitat for Humanity is grateful to Brookfield Residential for investing in the lives of families through the Habitat program. Their contribution will provide ongoing stability, equity and hope for a family. Since Habitat homes remain in the affordable housing pool, if a family decides to move on, the house is sold back to Habitat and another well-deserving family will be served. Brookfield’s contribution will serve families for years down the road.

HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Family home for the holidays thanks to Tristate Signature Homes and Habitat for Humanity!

Leduc, AB – The holiday spirit was in the air as Karen and her two children (Gavin and Danielle) celebrated their new home ownership inside a beautiful home made possible by Tristate Signature Homes. This home ownership opportunity will allow Karen to build equity in her home and allow her children to be rooted in the community of Leduc without any fear of relocation. A promising future is in store and just in time for the Christmas season.

“Handing over keys during the Christmas season is very special to everyone at Habitat and to the family,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO, Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “Even though the family is paying a mortgage, the home is still a gift in many ways. It’s the gift of healthy pride, stability, equity – but most importantly, it’s the gift of hope. This family now has a bright future ahead of them with many fond memories to be made.”

Habitat relies on partnerships with individuals, corporations and governments to effectively run their affordable home ownership program. The Government of Alberta continues to invest in the future of its citizens by investing in Habitat’s sustainable model.

“Our government is proud to support Habitat for Humanity’s affordable home ownership program as it continues to grow in the City of Leduc and communities all across Alberta,” said Municipal Affairs Minister Ken Hughes. “Habitat for Humanity and its partners deserve recognition for once again coming together to bring home ownership to another family during this special time of the year.”

Tristate Signature Homes joined the Habitat Day in the Capital Region family in 2012 when they announced that they would gift a home to Habitat for Humanity. The generosity of capital region home builders has resulted in pledged homes for 19 families. Tristate’s President Arash Vahdaty knows that this gift is important for families, but also for community and his industry.

“Owning a home is a milestone in many people’s lives which provides a sense of pride and fulfillment. Tristate Homes witnesses this every day, and we hope that everyone who works toward home ownership is able to experience it,” said Arash Vahdaty, President, Tristate Signature Homes. “With the donation of this home, we are emphasizing that even as a smaller builder we can support our community in a big way, and encourage the rest of the home building industry to use their skills and expertise to do the same.”

The Leduc Foundation has supported Habitat initiatives in Leduc over the years and they continue to support Habitat by investing in our program.

“It is with great pleasure that Leduc Foundation is participating in the dedication of this Habitat for Humanity home in the City of Leduc,” said Nancy Laing, Executive Director, Leduc Foundation. “To have a local family provided with the opportunity for home ownership is very exciting. It is all that more meaningful that our partnership with Habitat for Humanity Edmonton is coming to reality during the year of Leduc Foundation’s 50th Anniversary.”

Habitat is grateful to Tristate Signature Homes, the Government of Alberta and the Leduc Foundation for making this home possible for Karen, Gavin and Danielle.

HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Successful pilot project brings home ownership to a Métis Settlement – first time in Canadian history.

Elizabeth Métis Settlement, AB – Six families received keys to their new Habitat for Humanity homes on the Elizabeth Métis Settlement (EMS), marking the end of a successful pilot project by Habitat for Humanity Edmonton (HFHE) and EMS. In total, eight families have become homeowners – the first time in Canada that homeownership has become available on a Métis settlement. The success is due to the forward-thinking Aboriginal community and their willingness to proactively address local housing needs.

“Habitat is proud of our successful partnership launching the first ever Habitat homeownership program on a settlement with the Elizabeth Métis Settlement,” said Carolyn Graham, Chair, HFHE. “Elizabeth has embraced this first-of-its-kind pilot project and, as a result, eight families now enjoy home ownership on the Settlement. This successful project has the potential to transform how affordable housing is delivered to other settlements.”

The Government of Alberta has supported Habitat’s sustainable program for many years and has been a champion for affordable housing in our province. Habitat continues to work towards housing solutions for Aboriginal communities, and the success of this new pilot project demonstrates the transferability and sustainability of their home ownership model.

“Today is historic day and I congratulate the families and the community on this significant accomplishment,” said Minister of Aboriginal Relations Robin Campbell. “These homes reflect a commitment by Premier Redford to ensure safe, stronger families and communities. Through the Metis Settlements Long-Term Arrangements, we are partnering with Habitat to do similar projects in other Settlements as we continue with our building Alberta Plan.”

“Discussions between the Settlement and Habitat were ongoing for many years with both parties determined to make affordable homeownership a reality for Settlement members,” said Irene Zimmer, Chair, EMS Council. “Habitat and our Council signed the historic partnership in January of 2011, and when the opportunity to build four duplexes arose in the summer of 2012, both parties worked diligently to ensure the project’s success. With eight growing families – a total of 15 adults and 25 children – building equity, we cannot help but be excited.”

The homes at EMS are purchased at market value from HFHE. The families’ mortgage payments are interest-free and are 25 percent of their income, and every mortgage payment is equity in their home. Since Habitat homes are funded up front through financial donations, gifts of building materials and volunteer labour, Habitat is able to reinvest the mortgage payments back into affordable housing on EMS. This model enables Habitat to build more homes on EMS and, for members and the community, this is welcome news.

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HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Habitat, Lafarge, and Stantec win two Alberta Construction Magazine Awards!

Habitat for Humanity Edmonton, Lafarge and Stantec received two Alberta Construction Magazine awards for 2013 for the innovative NetZero Energy Precast Concrete homes built in Edmonton, Alberta.

The first award was Alberta Construction Magazine’s 2013 Top Project Award, Sustainability.

The second award was Alberta Construction Magazine’s 2013 Top Project Award, Project of the Year.

Habitat Edmonton is proud our partnership with Lafarge and Stantec and are honoured to receive rewards! We look forward to continuing to find innovative ways to provide affordable, sustainable housing to well-deserving families.

(To read the Alberta Construction Magazine article, please click here. )

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HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Homeownership becomes a reality for a well-deserving family thanks to Pacesetter Homes in partnership with Qualico

Homeownership becomes a reality for a well-deserving family thanks to Pacesetter Homes in partnership with Qualico.

Stony Plain, AB –It was an unforgettable day for Christian and Karina and their two children Christian (8) and Victoria (1). The family received a new Habitat for Humanity home as the result of a donation from Pacesetter Homes in partnership with Qualico. The home was pledged to Habitat during the Fourth Annual Habitat Day in the Capital Region this past April. Christian and Karina will now be able to raise their children in a stable environment.

“Pacesetter Homes, in partnership with Qualico, have demonstrated how important it is for families to have access to affordable homeownership,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO of Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “The contribution they’re making is sustainable. It’s an investment that will serve a Stony Plain family many years down the road, and as this family makes mortgage payments, Habitat will use those funds to benefit even more Stony Plain families.”

The Government of Alberta has supported Habitat’s sustainable program for many years and has been a champion for affordable housing in our province.

“We rely on strong partnerships to support our affordable housing programs, and our government is pleased that Habitat for Humanity continues to gather more supporters through special events like Habitat Day in the Capital Region,” said Municipal Affairs Minister Doug Griffiths. “Habitat for Humanity and its housing industry partners deserve recognition for coming together to strengthen the community of Stony Plain and bring home ownership to this family.”

As a participant in Habitat Day in the Capital Region, Zan Owsley, Vice President at Pacesetter Homes, was delighted to partner with Habitat to make a home available for Christian, Karina and their children.

“As a leading builder in the greater Edmonton area we feel it is our responsibility to contribute to affordable housing in our communities,” said Zan Owsley, VP at Pacesetter Homes. “Habitat is a wonderful organization for us to do that through because of their great housing program that helps families get into a home that otherwise would not be able to.”

Habitat for Humanity is grateful to Pacesetter Homes and Qualico for investing in the Habitat program. Their contribution will provide ongoing stability, equity and hope for a family. Since Habitat homes remain in the affordable housing pool, if a family decides to move on, the house is sold back to Habitat and another well-deserving family will be served. Pacesetter’s and Qualico’s contribution will serve families for years down the road.