Thursday, March 24, 2016

HFH Gateway North News 24.03.2016

Serving Orillia Lake Country, North Simcoe, District of Muskoka, Parry Sound District, North Bay and Blue Sky Region and Sudbury District
Easter Hours at our ReStores

Pleas take note! Our ReStores have modified hours due to the Easter holiday.

Friday March 25th, Good Friday - Closed
Saturday March 26th - 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Sunday March 27th - Closed
Monday March 28th - 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
In This Issue:
* Easter Hours at our ReStores
* From the CEO's Desk
* PJ Day Raises Dollars
* Save the Dates
* Happy Easter from the Bracebridge ReStore
* Quote of the Week
The Newsreel: Quick Facts to Keep You Informed!
* Support our Bracebridge 2016 Women Build bydonating online or joining our Women Build Team. Find out more by contacting usor calling (705) 646-0106 x205.
* Our Espanola Build rolls on! Stay up to date with photos and more at the Habitat for Humanity - Espanola Build Facebook Page.
* Habitat Canada has launched the Brick for Brick Campaign. 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 campaign visithabitat.ca/brickforbrick
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!
Hello Habitat Gateway North Community!

I am excited to announce our very first Wonder Woman (if you're wondering what that means, you'll have to stay tuned for full details)! Marian Burdsall graciously donated $1,000 to our Women Build Campaign this past week. The first donation towards our goal of raising $100,000 before our Women Build commences. While the official start date of our Women Build is fluid for the time-being (securing land, engineering, all the fun stuff!), our fundraising goal is firm.

While fundraising is one of the most important factors in the Habitat build process, recently I've noticed myself paying far more attention to the people and the stories I cross paths with on a daily basis.



Each volunteer, staff member, donor and Chapter member I talk to, has a Habitat story. There are always many experiences, but usually there is one specific story that stands out in their mind. The pivotal experience in their tenure with Habitat.

My favourite story, to date, is from our Gravenhurst home dedication last spring. The build was 95% complete and our two new partner families were thrilled to be moving into their new homes. We held the home dedication ceremony in one of the homes with a wonderful show of support from the community. After the formal portion of the ceremony, there were refreshments and photos to commemorate the occasion.

As I stood talking to a small group of people, I heard a voice beside me politely say "Excuse me, Meghan." I looked down to the daughter of one of our new homeowners. "Could I please have one of the balloons to keep?" She was referring to one of six balloons with "Welcome Home" emblazoned across them. Such a small ask, but it hit me right in the heart. I was thrilled to oblige and catch the look on her face as she happily claimed a balloon for herself.

It doesn't matter how you choose to be involved, but I can guarantee you can ask anyone who is part of the organization for their Habitat story. If you're willing to share your Habitat story, we want to hear from you! Get in touch with us and share yours.

Be well, do good deeds and keep in touch,

Meghan
From the CEO's Desk

It was easier to be thinking spring-like thoughts earlier in the week, but the paperwork popping up on my desk leaves little doubt build season is upon is. I thought I’d offer an update on our 6-IN-’16 build plans, although it’s with the caveat that our plans remain somewhat fluid.

(2 of 6): Thanks to site supervisor Jeff Lapierre, his trusty assistant Kris Kring, and volunteers, work continues on our Espanola semi-detached. When last I checked in, Jeff was aiming for an early June completion.

(3 of 6): Thanks to our North Simcoe Chapter, an area Habitat home will be given a “shave and a haircut” over the next few weeks in readiness for our next partner family.

(4 and 5 of 6): We discovered last week that our Huntsville build lot will accommodate our “Model ‘A’” semi-detached – the first of our standardized models – with room left over for a four-unit row house. Our game plan is to have the semi under construction by early June and to hold the balance of the land for 2017.

(6 through 9 of 6): We’re working on an opportunity that could (and I stress “could”) provides us with land in Bracebridge that would accommodate a four-unit row. This might necessitate our pushing the planned early July start of the Women Build ahead a few weeks, but I think the possibility of the Women Build delivering the completed exterior shell of a four-unit row, rather than the planned semi, is tremendously exciting.

(10 and 11 of 6): We are viewing an Orillia build this year as an absolute must. We expect Orillia Municipal Council will formally act on our request for the donation of a particular surplus piece of city land in early April.

(12 through 15 of 6): Once our focus can move off the front-end of the build schedule, we’ll be more actively working with our Parry Sound and North Bay Chapters on the prospect of a semi in each community. Land acquisition is a key factor.

I think I’ve given just about everyone cause to question my ability to count and/or plan. It’s a criticism I’ll happily accept if it means we’ll serve at least 11-In-’16, with the possibility that we could see 13 or 15 dedication services by year-end.

Without partner families, Habitat builds nothing but buildings. We have wonderful family selection committees across the region. Collectively, we have considerable communications experience and expertise at our disposal. It’s my intention over the next couple of weeks to pull together our resources with the aim of overcoming Habitat’s chronic and pan-Canadian challenge: How do we attract applications from “our” families?  

Whether it’s 11, 13 or 15, it’ll be fundraising that determines not only our service to families this year, but the foundations we put in place to serve even more in 2017 (the voice in the back of my head is screaming “17-IN-‘17”, but I’m prepared to settled for 20!). We’ll be ramping up our fundraising efforts in the coming weeks, beginning with implementation of our Salesforce database platform.

As evident by the prospect of 15-IN-’16, we have before us a tremendous opportunity to be of service. Like spring, build season is just around the corner, but construction is but part of the effort.

Have a great Easter and a great week,

David  
PJ Day Raises Dollars

Habitat Gateway North staff stayed in their pajamas on Wednesday March 23rd to help raise funds for the upcoming Women Build. Each staff member donated  to the campaign for the privilege to wear their pajamas to work.

From left: Greg Cowan, Aura Devy, Jessie Kozack, Kevin Manley and Hilary Kellam.
Save the Dates

We have several events already scheduled for this year, run by our Chapter Committees and third party groups. So mark your calendars or contact us to get involved!

June 11th - Band on the Run in support of Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North

June 16th - Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North Golf Classic presented by North Granite Ridge Golf Club


June/July - Women Build Bracebridge

July 2nd - Parry Sound Chapter's Annual Giant Yard Sale and Auction


*NEW DATE* July 15th - North Bay and Blue Sky Region Chapter Golf Tournament

September 12th - Parry Sound Chapter Golf Tournament at Rocky Crest Golf Club

Saturday, March 19, 2016

HFH Gateway North News 18.03.2016


Serving Orillia Lake Country, North Simcoe, District of Muskoka, Parry Sound District, North Bay and Blue Sky Region and Sudbury District
All Hands on Deck for Orillia Donation

Orillia volunteers, ReStore staff and regional office staff got together last weekend to load furniture donated by the fine folks at the Orillia Rodeway Inn. A truck coordinated with Orillia Fast Freight transported the goods from 33 hotel rooms to our regional ReStore Distribution Cnentre for sale across the region. Thank you Orillia Rodeway Inn and Orillia Fast Freight for your support of our ReStores!

Photos were taken by Orillia Chapter volunteer Carmen Agius

 
In This Issue:
* All Hands on Deck for Orillia Donation
* From the CEO's Desk
* South Almaguin Fundraiser
* Volunteer Spotlight
* Putting the FUN in Fundraising
* Save the Dates
* Quote of the Week
The Newsreel: Quick Facts to Keep You Informed!
* Support our Bracebridge 2016 Women Build bydonating online or joining our Women Build Team. Find out more by contacting usor calling (705) 646-0106 x205.
* Our Espanola Build rolls on! Stay up to date with photos and more at the Habitat for Humanity - Espanola Build Facebook Page.
* Habitat Canada has launched the Brick for Brick Campaign. 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 campaign visithabitat.ca/brickforbrick
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!
Hello Habitat Gateway North Community!

Amongst the growing list of projects we have on-the-go across our region, a larger portion of my week was focussed on Women Build planning. I am incredibly enthusiastic about this project, the team coming together and the opportunity for the whole community to partake in something special.

Let's take a detour for a moment to explore why I think a Women Build is such an extraordinary concept. One word: feminism. Now, I know some of you probably just balked or scoffed or even stopped reading. The word feminism is misleading and, unfortunately, has many misconceptions surrounding it. The true definition of feminism is the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes. Feminism is the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities.

Reviewing the national statistics, less than 15% of build site volunteers on Habitat for Humanity construction projects are female. However, 50%  of all Habitat for Humanity volunteers are female (ReStore, office, committees, etc.). Why the gap? There could be any number of reasons and there probably isn't just one reason. In my mind, the real challenge is how to bridge that gap.

"It doesn’t matter what measurement is around our thigh, it matters what you put out into the world. It matters how many times a day you smile, and are you good to the people in your life. Are you good to the people you work with? Are you good to your family and your friends? Are you good to your community? Those are the things that make a person beautiful." - Sophia Bush

Feminism is about equality in all things for both sexes. Women Build is not about excluding men. It's about engaging women and providing opportunity to learn, grow and prosper. Women Build is about engaging the community, sharing skills, creating partnerships and having fun while we're at it.

Working on our plan for Women Build this week, it became abundantly clear to me how unique this project is. Across our region, our Chapters are managed by strong, talented volunteers; men and women. Our ReStores are operated by strong, talented staff; men and women. Our regional office is handled by strong, talented staff; men and women. Our builds should be no different.

Our Women Build this summer is not to be missed! If you want to take part, get in touch by email or by calling (705) 646-0106 x205.

Be well, do good deeds and keep in touch,

Meghan
From the CEO's Desk

I have a dear friend who happens to be female and who happens to have a year up on me. A number of years ago, while comparing notes from the road, we agreed our 40s was a time of growing comfortable with ourselves, our 50s a time of growing militant about it. When you’ve accepted the less-than-perfect you for who you are, it gets nothing but easier to thumb yer’ nose at those who don’t.

Our conversation opened my eyes to the waves of maturation I now see rocking my peer group. A few years ago for instance, seemingly overnight, more and more friends were opting for retirement, not at all because they were financially secure, but because they were feeling an urgent need for life to be more than a nine-to-five tether to a pay cheque.

Of late, I notice I’m finding warmish humour in the sorts of human behaviour that once would have driven me crazy. If conversations with my friends are to be believed, they’re noticing similar blessings befalling their lives. I guess acceptance of our less-than-perfect selves also makes it easier to accept less-than-perfect others.

The evolutionary nature of life has been on my mind this week as a staffing change has taken shape – one that a younger version of me would have described as unusual; one, this version of me, sees as entirely fitting.

Donna Godfrey has served as our Director of Development and Communications since August of last year. Being somewhat of the same vintage as me, Donna has also come around to the firm conviction that life and therefore work should generally be fun. To that end, Donna will take up a new role on Monday as Assistant Manager of our Orillia ReStore.

Anyone who has had contact with Donna will understand my excitement with having her upbeat energy in a leadership role as we gear-up to move the Orillia store to its new location for early July. I think it’s just as easy to appreciate why the prospect of dealing with the public all day strikes Donna as fun. We wish her thanks for her contributions to HFHOGN to date and best of luck in her new role.

Have a great week…and have some fun!

David
Volunteer Spotlight

Brenda Crewson has been a super star volunteer at the Bracebridge ReStore since January 2016. She is friendly, hard working and always willing to lend a hand. Last Friday, everyone at the ReStore had the pleasure of meeting her outgoing son Cameron. Cameron was thrilled to see his mom volunteering in the ReStore and was eager to help bag customers purchases and organize merchandise. Brenda and Cameron are most definitely a dynamic duo and we hope to have the pair return to help out again soon!
Putting the FUN in Fundraising

Fundraising can be a difficult job. Triumph, anxiety, nerves, failure and success are all in a day’s work. So when we came across this article, it seemed fitting to share.

What’s the best fundraising advice for nonprofits in 2016?

I hope fundraisers will make 2016 the year they really get into their donors’ heads and hearts. Start really talking to donors in their donors’ worlds, not their own.  To talk about the cause on the donors’ terms — which means meeting your non-experts where they are, not trying to educate them first. Your fundraising really takes off when you stop trying to make fundraising make sense for yourself and your colleagues and instead aim at real-life donors. This means make everything you say simpler and more emotional. This is a difficult step to take, but the sky’s the limit once you make it your rule to meet donors where they are! —Jeff Brooks, Future Fundraising Now

Master, truly master, the tenets of what it means to be donor-centered. Donor centricity goes beyond throwing a few ‘you’s’ in your web copy. It goes to a deep love of humanity and the partners who make your work possible. —Pamela Grow, Pamela Grow Consulting

Change the story you’re telling yourself about your fundraising efforts. You’re not bugging people or “begging.” You are giving people an amazing opportunity to invest in something they care deeply about. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and ask them! —Marc A. Pitman, Fundraising Coach

Thank the donors you have. Tell them specifically about what their gifts have made possible. Make them feel something and ask them to do more. Grow your relationship with the donors you have before you look for new donors. The grass isn’t greener! Love the one you’re with. —Rory Green, Fundraiser Grrl

Source: The Nonprofit Hub

If you're a donor, how do you want to be recognized? How often do you want to hear about your donation at work? Let us know!
Save the Dates

We have several events already scheduled for this year, run by our Chapter Committees and third party groups. So mark your calendars or contact us to get involved!

March 19th - South Almaguin Fundraiser, Concert and Dessert Night featuring the Fern Glen Fiddleheads. Admission by donation. Birchdale Community Church starting at 7 p.m.

June 11th - Band on the Run in support of Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North

June 16th - Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North Golf Classic presented by North Granite Ridge Golf Club

June 23rd - North Bay and Blue Sky Region Chapter Golf Tournament

June 24th/25th - Parry Sound Chapter's Annual Giant Yard Sale and Auction

June/July - Women Build Bracebridge

September 12th - Parry Sound Chapter Golf Tournament at Rocky Crest Golf Club
Quote of the Week

"Women belong in all places where decisions are being made... It shouldn't be that women are the exception." - Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Saturday, March 12, 2016

HFH Gateway North News 11.03.2016


From left to right: Branka Moore, Julie Bissonette, Donna Godfrey, Hilary Kellam, Katrina Scarlett, Melanie Marshall

International Women's Day

Little did we know that Habitat had its own Super Woman!  We found out on Tuesday March 8th as our Habitat for Humanity Women Build Team celebrated International Women's Day with the YWCA Muskoka crew and many other amazing women at the Rene Caisse Theatre in Bracebridge. YWCA Muskoka held their 6th Annual Women in Film Festival, which had a superhero theme. Our Habitat team enjoyed speaking to women, and a few men, before the festival began about our Bracebridge Women Build this summer. Many women eagerly signed up to volunteer and were excited by the idea of a female crew building a home for local families in need. A big thank you goes out to YWCA Muskoka for inviting our team to this wonderful and engaging event!
In This Issue:
* International Women's Day
* From the CEO's Desk
* Women Build Team
* Orillia ReStore Relocation
* ReStore Garden Dragonflies
* Quote of the Week
The Newsreel: Quick Facts to Keep You Informed!
* Our Espanola Build rolls on! Stay up to date with photos and more at the Habitat for Humanity - Espanola Build Facebook Page.
* Habitat Canada has launched the Brick for Brick Campaign. 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 campaign visithabitat.ca/brickforbrick
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!
Hello Habitat Gateway North Community!

This week has felt a bit like working on that giant 2500 piece puzzle which takes an entire summer to complete. A detailed scene with sky and trees and farmland and some pieces which you are certain should fit but just aren't quite right. It's a process to sift through and, slowly but surely, have the puzzle match the picture on the box.

It's a small victory to have two pieces fit together after many trials and hours of searching. Having that "aha!" moment is priceless when you've been staring at the same pieces for a few days. That's what was happening this week - small victories on the way to the bigger picture.



The Women Build Team that met this week was one piece fitted into place as team members discussed fundraising opportunities and plans for the process. Sitting at the table, I could feel the energy from such a dynamic and engaged group of local women. I cannot wait to see this group run with their Women Build project!

A personal victory was sorting out an IT solution for Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North which will include the ability to schedule meetings, share documents, work remotely and collaboratively, store photos and more. The implementation is another piece still finding it's way into the picture.

My tactic was always to work on the outline of the puzzle first, and then work my way in. I can see the outline for Habitat Gateway North's summer 2016 activities. It's an impressive looking picture so far...

Be well, do good deeds and keep in touch,

Meghan
From the CEO's Desk

I find it interesting to reflect on how much story-telling has dominated activity in the affiliate office over the last couple of weeks.

On Monday evening of this week, we did a presentation to Orillia’s municipal council in support of a request we’ve made for the donation of a couple of lots in the city. We expect to have a response to that request in early April.

The presentation is the latest iteration of our “elevator speech,” as it’s come to be called of late in pop business writing (“bizspeak” as I less-than-affectionately call it!) – a presentation we had been formulating for the prior couple of weeks. I actually prefer to think of the presentation as a political stump speech, in that our objective is to continue distilling the key elements of the story that most clearly engage and resonate with our audience.

Siri Hustvedt, one of my favourite novelists and essayists, points out that great storytelling isn’t about spoon-feeding an audience, it’s about painting just enough of a scene that the listener fills in the blanks (Stuart McLean does this brilliantly on CBC’s Vinyl Café). I again sawon Monday evening that addressing Habitat’s benefit to our partner families isn’t nearly as powerful as simply mentioning the participation of our partner family children in extra-curricular arts and sports programs increases. Few caring adults have difficulty filling in the rest of the story.

This week, our story-telling has been focused on our planned July Women Build in Bracebridge. Habitat build projects have to also be fundraising events, and our target is $100,000 with the Women Build. A key element, then, is telling the Habitat story in such a way that it engages and resonates with women, and leaves them keen to contribute their time and dollars.

It struck me earlier in the week that the commitment to Habitat that I see in our remarkable volunteers and that I’ve seen in the remarkable volunteers with whom I’ve worked and built in other affiliates and geographical areas is a deeply personal one. It’s enticing to believe clever marketing will allow us to mobilize community as our mission statement demands of us. It’s a more noble challenge and a far richer reward to engage community at the level of our shared humanity.

We’ll keep working on the story-telling.

Have a great week,

David
Women Build Team

Our Women Build Team for our Bracebridge 2016 build met again this week to discuss project planning, fundraising and more.

Women Build is an opportunity for women of all ages and abilities to join Habitat for Humanity in building a safe, decent home for a hard-working local family. Women Build is not about excluding men, it's about engaging and empowering women in yet another form of community and personal development. No experience is necessary, just a commitment to having fun and making a difference.

Help us raise funds for our first ever Women Build in Bracebridge! Join for the friendships. Join for the fun. Join for the skill building. Join Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North's Women Build Bracebridge 2016!

Get involved now by donating online, calling Donna at (705) 646-0106 x209 or emailing us atinfo@habitatgatewaynorth.com.
David Morris, right, CEO of Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North, is pictured with Will Zaraska, landlord of the future home of the local agency's ReStore on James Street West in Orillia.

Orillia ReStore Relocation

MEHREEN SHAHID, Orillia Packet & Times

Habitat for Humanity's local ReStore will move into a new home in Orillia this summer.

"It's a great location," David Morris, CEO of Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North, said of the 9,200-square-foot warehouse at 220 James St. W. "It's a very affordable location for us. We've signed a long-term lease, which reflects our confidence in the landlord and location and, in turn, I think it reflects the landlord's confidence in us. We think it's absolutely perfect for a ReStore, because of the fast-food lane here along Memorial Avenue."

Read the full story from The Orillia Packet & Times here.

ReStore Garden Dragonflies

Often customers in the ReStore are looking for items for a project. It might be a home renovation, or it could be repurposing an item for something completely different. I'm always intrigued to hear what ideas people are working on!

I always ask our customers to share photos of their new creations and this week, Wayne did! Wayne purchased several sets of ceiling fan blades from our Sudbury ReStore to create dragonfly garden art. They're fun, quirky and not too difficult!

If you have a creation to share, send it to us via email. We love to see your creativity at work!

Stephanie Long
ReStore Manager - Sudbury
Quote of the Week

"You can do what I cannot do. I can do what you cannot do. Together we can do great things." - Mother Teresa

Saturday, March 5, 2016

HFH Gateway North News 04.03.2016

Serving Orillia Lake Country, North Simcoe, District of Muskoka, Parry Sound District, North Bay and Blue Sky Region and Sudbury District
Women Build 2016

In case you missed it, Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North's Donna Godfrey joined hosts Steve Brooks and Katrina Scarlett of Spotlight on Bracebridge to speak about the Women Build taking place this summer in Bracebridge. Listen to the interview on Hunters Bay Radio.

Stay tuned for more exciting details on our Women Build in the coming weeks!
In This Issue:
* Women Build 2016
* From the CEO's Desk
* Volunteers at Work
* Fundraising with Donna
* Quote of the Week
The Newsreel: Quick Facts to Keep You Informed!
* Our Espanola Build rolls on! Stay up to date with photos and more at the Habitat for Humanity - Espanola Build Facebook Page.
* Habitat Canada has launched the Brick for Brick Campaign. 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 campaign visithabitat.ca/brickforbrick
Know someone who'd like to be involved with Habitat? Share the newsletter with them! Anyone interested in staying in touch can sign up for the weekly newsletter here!
Hello Habitat Gateway North!

I was perusing Twitter last night when I came across a tweet that said "What Successful Famous Person Are You Most Like?". So, of course, I needed to know the secret to how I could also be successful and famous and clicked through. Big surprise: there was no real secret in the article. However, its focus was on personality traits and specifically led to a Myers-Briggs type personality assessment.

I took 10 minutes to complete the assessment, answering as truthfully and intuitively as I could. The assessment streams you into one of 16 personality types, in four main categories. My result: The Advocate (INFJ). I read through the description, traits, strengths, weaknesses, with an eerie sense that I was being followed around and reported on. This assessment was on point!

Of course, I was further intrigued, so I continued reading about the other personality types (this was one of those cases where you say you'll be on Twitter for 5 minutes and suddenly, you're down the rabbit hole.) While you may think or feel a personality assessment has no bearing on anything, completing the assessment was an exercise in self-reflection for me. It illuminated why certain jobs made me cringe while others invigorated me.

Reading the different personality traits, I found myself thinking of people in my life, both personal and work-related, summed up by the definitions. While some personalities may clash, we all need a healthy assortment of personalities in our lives. There's a reason you're drawn to the friend you call when you need a pick-me-up or the co-worker you can always rely on to have a new innovative idea.

If you haven't before, I suggest you take 10 minutes to complete the assessment, or one like it. Doing so may show you hidden strengths, possible career paths, maybe even how to be successful and famous. At the very least, it's a conversation starter.

Be well, do good deeds and keep in touch,

Meghan
From the CEO's Desk

Some ReStore updates to share, beginning with February being another stellar month for our stores.  To mix metaphors, our sales for the month blew those of February 2015 out of the water and out of the park! Congratulations and thanks to our wonderful team of managers and staff.

It certainly isn’t news at this point that our Orillia ReStore is on the move. But after months of scouting out new quarters and negotiating a lease agreement, the move is now official. We’ll be setting up shop at 220 James Street West, immediately east of “fast food lane” on Memorial Avenue.



Our tentative plan is to do a “soft” opening in the new location on July 2nd, spend the first week working out the kinks, and then do a grand opening on July 9th.

Our new landlord and his crew are busy this week stripping out dividing walls to open up a 9,200 square foot space for us. When we take possession in early May, the walls will be freshly painted and the floor scrubbed down. We’ll then have a couple of months to partition washrooms, a receiving area, office, and lunchroom/meeting space.

After seeing the impact of a fresh coat of floor paint on the appearance of our Midland ReStore, I expect we’ll give Orillia the same treatment before racking it up and filling its shelves.

Much of the initial stocking of the new location will come from Habitat Canada’s national ReStore Distribution Centre in Brampton. This gives us both the opportunity and need to “clear” the contents of our current location. That effort begins in earnest next week.

After initially planning to move sooner than later on the opening of a North Bay ReStore, we’re taking pause to scout alternative and much larger space in Sudbury. With a market ten-times that of Bracebridge, our leading ReStore, a tremendous and thus far untapped northern opportunity awaits us.

I’m counting on our Orillia relocation serving as a training run for a Sudbury move as well as the delayed opening of North Bay.

Have a great week,

David  
Volunteers at Work

A group of our volunteers had some fun at the Bracebridge ReStore this week sorting and packaging cutlery. It's the little things that help make our ReStores look in tip-top shape. And it's great volunteers like Jenny, Rebecca, Cameron, Mike and Sarah who fill our ReStores with laughter, fun, and friendship. Thank you all for all of your hard work!
Fundraising with Donna: Planned or Strategic Giving

I don’t know about you, but I like the term “strategic giving” as opposed to planned giving.  Many prefer “planned giving” as that’s how it has always been known. But you may also hear terms such as deferred giving, legacy giving, or estate giving. Regardless of what you call it, it simply is a method to leave money or assets to a nonprofit of your choice upon death and is included in your will.

It has been said that the reason donors don’t often consider a planned gift is because it forces them to think about death – their death in particular. And then there are those who don’t even know what it is. If you fall into this category, please read on.

Here are a few things to consider about planned giving:
  • To some donors, the idea of knowing their planned gift could continue to support the work of their favourite charity is rewarding.
  • Donor's gifts may be recognized in very special and unique ways within their chosen charity, eg. a Habitat tribute build (based on the gift value).
  • Donors can direct/designate their gift in the area of most interest to them.
  • Donors receive a tax benefit or advantages permitted under government guidelines.
HFHOGN recently joined the Planned Giving Council of Simcoe County. That’s the first step!

For more information, please contact Donna Godfrey, Director of Development and Communications at 705-646-0106 x209 or donna@habitatgatewaynorth.com.
Quote of the Week

"Change doesn't come in nickels and dimes. It comes in dedication and sweat." - Toni Sorenson