Saturday, July 30, 2016

HFH Gateway North News 29.07.2016

Serving Orillia Lake Country, North Simcoe, District of Muskoka, Parry Sound District, North Bay and Blue Sky Region and Sudbury District
Team RBC Lends a Helping Hand in Espanola
On Tuesday, July 26, a group of ten volunteers from Northern Ontario Royal Bank of Canada branches donated their time, effort, sweat and $10,000 to Habitat for Humanity. Team RBC helped Jeff, Chris and Ryan spread gravel for the driveway, frame out decking, and paint around the exterior of the semi-detached. A big thank you to Sonia, Tammy, Sheri, Lisa, Nadine, Helen, Mike, Scott, Joaquim and Pauline.

In This Issue:

* Thank You Team RBC!
* From the CEO's Desk
* Hods & Sods
* Habitat Heroes | July
* Biking for Builds Detour Group Ride
* Katrine Country Music Jamboree
* Sudbury ReStore BBQ
* North Bay Amazing Race
* Health & Safety Tip
* Save the Dates
* Quote of the Week
The Newsreel: Quick Facts to Keep You Informed!
* Support our 2016 build projects across the region by donating online at
* Our Espanola Build rolls on! Stay up to date with photos and more at the Habitat for Humanity - Espanola Build Facebook Page.
* 1 in 5 Canadian families are living in unstable homes. But little by little, a brick for brick, you can help bring stability to the lives of many children from low income families. Because you're not just helping us put a roof over their head, you're helping us put the ground beneath their feet. For full details on the Brick for Brick campaign
Know someone who'd like to be involved with Habitat? Share the newsletter with them! Anyone who is interested in staying in touch can sign up for the weekly newsletterhere!
Hi Habitat Gateway North Team!

Some of my fondest memories, favourite meals, and best ways to spend time-off all have something in common: Simplicity. Weekend mornings spent with coffee and a book rank high in my opinion of the best way to spend a weekend. Pasta with fewer than five ingredients is a favourite meal. Memories of days at the beach or family game night are full of simple joy.

When the norm is having multiple projects on the go at all times, it's easy to muddy the waters and plan large, complicated ways to reach goals. In an average day, my own to-do list starts with 10 items and at the end of the day, items that have been crossed off have been replaced with new tasks.

In an organization with so many projects on the go, complicated questions are the norm at Habitat for Humanity. How do we reach new volunteers and maintain current ones? How can we master two-way reporting between the regional office and Chapters that pleases everyone? How is fundraising integrated at all levels of the organization? How do we build the capacity to serve more families while minimizing costs?

At times, it can feel like everything has to be complicated. You're accustomed to the busyness of the day to day and searching for the best option. What I am discovering, more and more, is the need to step back and look for the simple answer. Look at the problem from a different perspective. Reverse the usual order. Ask for a new opinion. Step out of your box and discover that the simple answer is usually the best one.

Take time this long weekend to enjoy some simple pleasures. I know I'll be enjoying coffee and a good book.

Be well, do good deeds and keep in touch,

From the CEO's Desk

Beginning with this issue, we’ll run a weekly update on our construction activities - recognizing there might be more to report some weeks than others. We’ll be figuring out as we go how to best plug volunteers into the assembly of the shell’s prefabricated wall panels. Once the shell is framed, the build becomes a more typical Habitat effort. Keep an eye on the weekly construction updates if you’re looking to swing a hammer or a screw gun or a….

I’m looking forward to taking some needed down time next week. Marian and I are fledgling sailors, so the game plan is to spend as much time on the water as weather permits. I’m also looking forward to the opportunity to step away from the day-to-day demands of the affiliate in order to put some creative thought into our build plans for next year. While doing so, I’m going to also take the week off of a newsletter note.

Have a great couple of weeks,

Huntsville (11 Irene St.; semi-detached; underway): As we reported last week, we had a wonderful day last Friday with a volunteer crew of 10 from Mondelez Canada, three from the Huntsville community, four from the HFHOGN office, and a lone voluntold spouse. We delayed pouring the foundation until next Tuesday to accommodate Redneck Concrete Pumping of Huntsville’s availability and very generous offer to provide its services free, as it had done so on the pour of the footings. Randy Blain and his crew are off on a construction holiday next week, so we’ll be getting down to serious build activity the week of August 7th. Randy wants to get the floor in place, the foundation backfilled, and the site levelled in advance of erecting the prefabricated wall sections.

Bracebridge (189 Muskoka Rd.; 4-unit row; permitting): Planscape, our planning consultants, continue to work with the Town of Bracebridge to resolve an issue with a municipal culvert that crosses a corner of our property and a retaining wall. We could see a resolution very quickly or only after a prolonged delay. We’ll move the Orillia build into second place for this season with the hope and expectation of coming back to Bracebridge later in the fall. We haven’t yet formally made the call, but our plan for this to be a Women Build open to the summer population will likely be postponed and recalibrated for 2017.

Orillia (499 Bay St.; semi-detached; permitting): We’re gearing up activity on the Orillia build, with our Chapter now reconnecting with past donors and build volunteers. The schedule calls for us to  be excavated in mid-August and construction to begin in early September. The Huntsville and Orillia buildings are identical, so we’re looking forward to the immediate transfer of learnings from one site to the next.

2017: The Carter Work Project comes to Canada next year, with a target of 150 home dedications in the week of July 9 – 15, in honour of Canada’s 150th birthday. Habitat Edmonton has committed 100 homes. Habitat Manitoba another 25. We’d like – okay, we'd love – to have HFHOGN contribute six to 12 of the remaining. How we do it is a matter of current brainstorming and planning

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