HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Habitat for Humanity’s Aurora Place development in St. Albert completed.

Habitat for Humanity’s Aurora Place development in St. Albert completed.

St. Albert, AB – Habitat for Humanity staff and volunteers completed the Aurora Place development by presenting keys to 10 well-deserving families. The project was completed two years after construction commenced at 70 Arlington Drive. There are now 30 new homeowners in Aurora Place who are building equity and preparing a bright future for their children.

“We are so pleased that all 30 families will now be rooted here in St. Albert,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO, Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “Children can attend St. Albert schools, parents can become more involved in their community, and the family unit can thrive. It’s very rewarding for our organization to be part of something so special.”

It takes many supporters to make Habitat builds a reality. Habitat is blessed to have the strong support of the Government of Alberta, who was a partner in the Aurora Place development.

“We thank Habitat for Humanity and its project partners for their commitment to affordable housing and the families of Aurora Place,” said Municipal Affairs Minister Doug Griffiths. “Our government is proud to have supported Habitat for Humanity on this project that will benefit and strengthen the community of St. Albert for many years to come.”

The City of St. Albert has been a stalwart supporter of making the Habitat program available to its citizens. The City was instrumental in helping Habitat enlist the land for the 30 families. The addition of the final 10 families means a total of 35 St. Albert families served by the Habitat program.

“Supporting the development of a range of affordable housing options for our community is a Council priority,” says St. Albert Mayor Nolan Crouse. “Habitat for Humanity provides an opportunity for local residents to experience the strength and stability of home ownership, and to build and enhance the quality of life for their family.”

Habitat families purchase their home at market value and pay an interest-free mortgage with payments that never exceed 25 percent of their income. Habitat uses the families’ mortgage payments to build more homes to serve a greater number of families. This is what makes the Habitat program sustainable. Habitat partner families also contribute 500 hours of “sweat equity” on Habitat build sites as the down payment for their home.

Major supporters of the 10 homes are the Government of Alberta, City of St. Albert, Gordon Food Service, Lloyd Sadd, 4-Way Equipment Rental, Go Auto and A & A Trenching.

HfH Edmonton’s Blog: REIN makes big announcement

After reaching the $1 M milestone in support of Habitat for Humanity Edmonton, REIN makes another major announcement.

Edmonton, AB—Don R. Campbell and the Real Estate Investment Network (REIN) initially partnered with Habitat for Humanity Edmonton in 2006. Don witnessed the incredible impact that the Habitat program brought to families and communities, and was delighted with the natural fit that REIN had with Habitat. REIN is all about real estate investing, and what better way to give back to the community than investing in a sustainable, affordable home ownership program for families in need.

Don committed the royalties of his first book Real Estate Investing in Canada to Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. After seeing the success from his first book, Don contributed 100% of the royalties from his subsequent seven books. From that point on, he has led the charge to support Habitat. Through his books and REIN members’ generous donations, the REIN community has contributed over $1 Million to Habitat.

“When we first started out supporting Habitat for Humanity, our goal was to raise $20,000,” said Don Campbell,. “Even though we’ve surpassed $1 Million, the REIN community continues to be enthusiastic about having a positive impact on families. We believe that the Habitat Edmonton program accomplishes this and we’re proud to continue raising support for this successful organization.”

“The generosity of Don and Connie Campbell and the REIN members has really left us speechless,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO, Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “REIN is our largest donor. They have donated over one million to date, and for them to step up again with another commitment is just astounding.”

REIN members have experienced the joys of the Habitat program firsthand as they presented house keys to many Habitat families over the years. Habitat for Humanity Edmonton is grateful for their ongoing support and their commitment to making affordable home ownership opportunities available for hard-working, well-deserving families.

Dream of home ownership comes true for a well-deserving Leduc family.

Leduc, AB — It was a morning to remember for Bonnie and her children Johnathan (15), Abigail (7) and Cale (6), as they received keys to their new Habitat for Humanity home courtesy of Dolce Vita Homes in partnership with Beaverbrook Developments. The home builder pledged the home to Habitat during Habitat Day in the Capital Region this past April. This ‘hand up’ will enable the families to provide a safe, secure and nurturing environment for their children, and to build equity in a home.

“We are so pleased that Dolce Vita Homes and Beaverbrook Developments have joined the ranks of Habitat Day supporters,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO of Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “The contribution they’re making is an investment – it’s a sustainable investment. Not only in the life of a family, but in the community of Leduc.”

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 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 industry partners all deserve recognition for coming together to strengthen the community and bring home ownership to this deserving family.”

“Habitat for Humanity represents hope, empowerment and pride in ownership and our city is proud to be one of this year’s capital region Habitat home locations through the generous support of one of our local developers, Dolce Vita Homes,” says Leduc Mayor Greg Krischke. “On behalf of the City of Leduc, I want to welcome and congratulate the new homeowners who contributed 500 hours of sweat equity in the construction of this wonderful home.”

As a first time participant in Habitat Day in the Capital Region, Stewart McAndrews, President of Dolce Vita Homes, has stepped up to partner with Habitat to provide homeownership to hard-working families.

“Dolce Vita has come to realize that supporting the Habitat program is a sustainable investment in our community,” said Stewart McAndrews, President of Dolce Vita Homes. “The home we are providing today will forever remain in the affordable home ownership pool serving families for years to come, which makes our support a deserving contribution to the community and families in need.”

Habitat is grateful to Dolce Vita Homes in partnership with Beaverbrook Developments, the Government of Alberta, and the Leduc Foundation for making affordable homeownership a reality through the Habitat program. Habitat families certainly thrive in their new homes, and our program continues to grow as we serve an increasing number of families in our capital region communities.

HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Largest Habitat build in Canadian history officially kicked off in Edmonton.

Edmonton, AB — Supporter signs lined the development as Habitat for Humanity Edmonton officially kicked off construction at Neufeld Landing, Habitat Edmonton’s largest development to date. Sixty-four families will be at home in the development once construction has been completed. Neufeld Landing is the largest Habitat build in Canadian history. The build is named in honour of Don Neufeld, a Habitat Edmonton volunteer who has contributed more than 15,000 hours since 1993.

“Having Neufeld Landing named after me is very humbling, but I hope that it motivates my family, friends and others to also be involved in helping others and giving back to their community,” said Don Neufeld. “The kick off ceremony today is truly heartwarming for both me and my family! I volunteer for Habitat for Humanity because I know I’m making a difference and I can use my skills to help Habitat in many capacities.”

It takes thousands of volunteers and community partners to make Neufeld Landing a reality. The Government of Alberta has been an instrumental supporter of Habitat for many years through affordable housing grants.

“Our government is committed to affordable housing for families and is proud to partner with Habitat for Humanity on this monumental project,” said Municipal Affairs Minister Doug Griffiths. “Helping 64 families become homeowners is an invaluable investment, and we commend Habitat for Humanity, volunteers and the private sector for their collaboration and hard work on Neufeld Landing.”

Under the leadership of Mayor Stephen Mandel, the City of Edmonton has made access to affordable housing a priority. The City has been a tremendous supporter of Habitat for Humanity Edmonton through the City of Edmonton’s Cornerstones program, which made the land purchase possible through a $2 million contribution.

“The City of Edmonton continues to see the positive impact of our successful Cornerstones program in quality projects like Neufeld Landing,” said Mayor Stephen Mandel. “We’re pleased to partner with Habitat for Humanity Edmonton once again, and we share their commitment to creating affordable housing for those who need it most.”

Initiatives like Neufeld Landing are not possible without generous hearts and strategic partnerships. Habitat for Humanity continues to work towards building communities through affordable home ownership. Families in Neufeld Landing will complete 500 hours of sweat equity as the down payment for their home. The Habitat program is a “hand up” not a handout – families pay an interest-free mortgage, and payments are never more than 25 percent of the family’s household income.

“We are incredibly blessed to live in a generous and caring community,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO, Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “The support we’ve been shown is absolutely humbling. Habitat thanks all the individuals, corporations, community and faith groups and organizations who have stepped up to make Neufeld Landing a reality. The truth is that we simply cannot build homes and hope without community support and partnerships. Our community has made all this possible.”

HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Christenson and Landmark gift more homes to support Habitat families.

Edmonton, AB — Joy was evident in the faces of the two local families who received keys to their new Habitat for Humanity homes courtesy of Landmark Group and Christenson Developments. The home builders pledged the homes to Habitat during Habitat Day in the Capital Region this past April. This ‘hand up’ will enable the families to provide a safe, secure and nurturing environment for their children, and to build equity in a home.

“This is a joyous day for Habitat for Humanity Edmonton,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO, Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “We celebrate every time a family in our program earns the keys to their new home. We know home ownership has a positive impact on their family, yes, but it also has a ripple effect throughout their community.”

And because of the positive impact on families and community, Habitat continues to gain supporters. The Government of Alberta is one supporter who has invested in Habitat’s sustainable program.

“Our government is committed to affordable housing for families and has proudly partnered with Habitat for Humanity since 2006 to build nearly 600 homes across the province,” said Municipal Affairs Minister Doug Griffiths. “Each project relies on hard work and support from the community, volunteers and private sector, and we thank everyone who contributed to the success of the Charlesworth build.”

As a founding member of Habitat Day in the Capital Region, Greg Christenson of Christenson Developments has been a strong advocate of the Habitat program over the past four years. Christenson Developments has now donated four homes to Habitat for Humanity.

“I’m pleased to be helping another working family in a new community in Edmonton,” said Greg Christenson, President of Christenson Developments. “I’m proud to be part of Habitat for Humanity in partnership with Landmark Group of Builders.”

Also a founding member of Habitat Day, Reza Nasseri, President & CEO of Landmark Group of Builders, has donated four homes through Habitat Day in the Capital Region. He is convinced that affordable home ownership is necessary for families in our community.

“Landmark Group is an ongoing supporter of Habitat for Humanity and is pleased to provide our fourth house to a hard working family in the Capital Region,” said Reza Nasseri, President & CEO, Landmark Group of Builders. “Each year we look forward to watching the excitement of the family as they receive the keys to their new home – it’s a very rewarding experience.”

Habitat is grateful to Landmark Group of Builders, Christenson Developments and the Government of Alberta for making affordable homeownership a reality through the Habitat program. Habitat families certainly thrive in their new homes, and our program continues to grow as we serve an increasing number of families in our capital region communities.

Habitat for Humanity breaks ground for first build in Fairview!

Fairview, AB — Friends of Habitat Edmonton Fairview (FOHEF) committee members and Fairview residents gathered at the future build site on 108th Avenue to officially kick off the Habitat build by turning sod. The project is the first for Habitat for Humanity in Fairview, and everyone is ramping up for an exciting time of volunteerism and community bonding.

“We rely on strong partnerships to support our affordable housing programs, and our government is thrilled to have Friends of Habitat Edmonton Fairview working hard to meet the community’s housing needs,” said Municipal Affairs Minister Doug Griffiths. “Habitat for Humanity and the Fairview committee deserve recognition for coming together to strengthen the community and bring home ownership to more Alberta families.”

“The Town of Fairview is delighted and honoured to be chosen for a Habitat for Humanity project. Fairview is famous for its community spirit and ‘can do’ attitude,” said Mayor Gord MacLeod. “We support the concept of helping families break that barrier of adversity with just a little help from their friends, neighbors and community.  The home will not be a “handout” – the recipient will need to put in their work, commitment and money, but it will be affordable. As for the volunteers, we have faith in the edict ‘If you building it, they will come.’ Once again, our community is stepping up to the plate to prove that Fairview is a great place to live, work and play.”

FOHEF has been diligently preparing to bring affordable home ownership opportunities to Fairview. The ground breaking denotes the beginning of what will be an exciting opportunity for two local families and for volunteers to join together in the spirit of neighbour-helping-neighbour. We welcome volunteers from beginners to professional tradespeople.

Habitat for Humanity homes are affordable because families pay an interest-free mortgage that is never more than 25 per cent of their income. However, these home ownership opportunities are not possible without the support of dedicated volunteers and donors. Habitat relies on partnerships to serve families in need of adequate housing and is thrilled that the Province of Alberta, Town of Fairview, Grande Prairie Catholic School District, Dan and Jeannette McLachlan (who donated the land), and many others are stepping up to make this build a success.

“We’re excited that the Province of Alberta, the Town of Fairview and the citizens have welcomed Habitat with open arms,” said Alfred Nikolai, President and CEO of Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “Fairview really understands the importance of community, and the committee really reflects that. They are doing an outstanding job laying the foundation for this build. We’re all looking forward to giving deserving Fairview families a hand up into home ownership.”

HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Local family celebrates the beginning of a promising future!

Edmonton, AB — Habitat for Humanity supporters and a well-deserving Edmonton family celebrated as a backhoe turned the soil for their new Habitat for Humanity home in Edmonton’s Rutherford community. Billy, Siobhan and their five children simultaneously used ceremonial shovels to officially kick off the construction of their new home.

“Habitat is all about serving families. Yes, we build houses, but our real focus is providing families with an opportunity to provide a bright future for their children,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO, Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “When families have a safe decent place to live, they thrive. They move from living from paycheque to paycheque to building equity.”

Habitat relies on the goodwill of volunteers and community partners. The Government of Alberta has been a strong supporter of Habitat for Humanity over the years.

“Finding quality, affordable housing is especially challenging for large families,” said Municipal Affairs Minister Doug Griffiths. “We truly appreciate Habitat for Humanity’s continuous efforts to find housing solutions so that a spacious, comfortable home can be built for this family.”

Habitat is also thrilled that Delcon Group has made this opportunity available for Billy, Siobhan, and their children through a generous donation.

“Delcon Group is pleased to provide a ‘hand up’ to a local family through Habitat for Humanity,” said Bill Winter, Vice President, Delcon Group. “We are grateful to participate in this build by providing the lot for a beautiful home to be built by volunteers, and we’re excited that this deserving family will be able to set roots in the Rutherford community.”

Habitat for Humanity homes are affordable because families pay an interest-free mortgage that is never more than 25 per cent of their income. Partner families must invest 500 hours of “sweat equity” as the down payment for their home. However, these home ownership opportunities are not possible without the support of dedicated volunteers and donors. Habitat relies on partnerships to serve families in need of adequate housing.

HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Students bring playground to Aurora Place

Students erect playground at Aurora Place

St. Albert, Alberta-A group of five grade 9 students from Buffalo Head Prairie School made a special trip to Habitat for Humanity’s Aurora Place development. As part of a woodworking and construction class, the students built the playground at the school and transported it piece by piece to the development. Today the students reassembled the playground in the heart of the development.

“Habitat is so grateful for this group of students who are learning not only construction skills, but what it means to give to community,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO of Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “This is the second time that we’ve had a group from Buffalo Head Prairie School down to give our developments a place for children to meet and to play with each other. This playground is more than just a place for children to hang out; it is a place where they’ll develop community.”

The first 20 of the 30 families are currently living in the development. When completed, Aurora Place will be home to approximately 60 children under the age of 18.

HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Habitat Edmonton wins 6 awards at National AGM

Habitat Edmonton takes home 6 awards from national AGM

Habitat for Humanity Canada held its Annual General Meeting on May 4th. As a result of our volunteers, community partners and staff, Habitat Edmonton took home 6 awards:

  1. Outstanding Tithe Contribution. Our “tithe” contributions to Habitat Canada goes towards building homes overseas. For every home we build locally we build one overseas.
  2. SHE Award for Outstanding Health & Safety. This award recognizes the affiliate who has established a safety management system specific to all activities within their operation that address safety, health of employees/volunteers, and protection of the environment.
  3. Green Building Award. The Award recognizes the affiliate who has reached the highest Energy Efficiency building standard for their province and incorporated sustainable practices that reduce environmental impact during construction and occupancy.
  4. ReStore Innovation Award. This Award recognizes ReStore STAFF and VOLUNTEERS for their leadership, accomplishments and innovation with their front line volunteers, within their affiliates and community.
  5. ReStore Sustainability Award. This Award recognizes the ONE location within the Habitat for Humanity Canada ReStore community that has demonstrated leadership in the area of environmental sustainability from a ReStore perspective.
  6. Affiliate Award of Excellence (Large Urban – 541K+). The Award recognizes affiliates for extraordinary accomplishments in advancing Habitat for Humanity’s mission.

HfH Edmonton’s Blog: Habitat for Humanity accepts five homes from big-hearted Home Builders.

Edmonton, AB — Capital Region business leaders and dignitaries gathered at the Delta Edmonton South to celebrate the fourth annual Habitat Day in the Capital Region. Special guests addressed the business leaders and the need for continued growth in affordable housing. The Habitat Day campaign has resulted in over $5 Million in assets since its inception in 2010. This year capital region builders will donate a total of five homes: three in Edmonton, one in Leduc and one in Stony Plain.

Leading the way for the fourth straight year, Christenson Developments and Landmark Group of Companies once again announced that they would each provide a home to Habitat. On board for the first time were Brookfield Residential, Dolce Vita Homes and Pacesetter Homes (in partnership with Qualico, who partnered last year with Sterling Homes). Five families will benefit from the generosity of these local home builders.

“Habitat homes would not be possible without the support of the community,” said Alfred Nikolai, President & CEO, Habitat for Humanity Edmonton. “The capital region home builders are not only business leaders, but wonderful champions for building homes and hope for well-deserving families. Every year I’m amazed at both the great minds and big hearts of capital region home builders. They understand the importance of the sustainable Habitat model and their generosity has helped 19 families in four years and has helped us continue to grow our program.”

Habitat homes are affordable because families pay an interest-free mortgage that is never more than 25 per cent of their income. When they pay their monthly mortgage payment, Habitat is able to reinvest those funds into building more homes.

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!