Thursday, February 9, 2017

HFH Gateway North News 02.06.2017

Serving Orillia Lake Country, North Simcoe, District of Muskoka, Parry Sound District, North Bay and Blue Sky Region and Sudbury District
ESPANOLA - On Sunday, Feb. 5, Habitat OGN welcomed two new homeowners and partner families into the fold with an official key-turning ceremony. Volunteers, sponsors, staff, friends and extended families braved the cold weather and gathered outside the newly constructed homes on Adelaide Street to celebrate.

Read the "Espanola | This is Home" story here
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In This Issue:
* Welcome Home!
* Youth and their Elders
* Citation

* ED wins Award
* Thank you Sponsors!
* Community Conversation
* Event Posters
* Save the Dates
* Quote of the Week
The Newsreel: Quick Facts to Keep You Informed!
* Support our 2017 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
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Hi Team Habitat Gateway North!

The administrative staff spent most of the day Sundayon the road to Espanola. We encountered some snowy road conditions, but we persevered, knowing we were heading through the storm to attend an incredible celebration. We were certainly not disappointed.

Despite the chilly temperatures, the sun was shining when we reached Espanola and the community had come out to welcome the Scheel family and the Lacasse-Leonard family to their new homes. The crowd was full of Chapter members, build team members, volunteers, family, friends, neighbours and donors. It was a wonderful opportunity to see the project to completion and to see the community embrace the families.

There’s a piece of our Habitat Homeowner Education that speaks to being a good neighbor and what it means to be a homeowner in the community. Homeownership is more than the physical house. It’s introducing yourself to your immediate neighbours and getting to know your new neighbourhood. It’s maintaining your home and keeping your yard tidy. It’s pitching in and helping when needed. It’s about multiple levels of respect – for your property, your neighbours’ property and your community as a whole.

Being a good neighbor is about treating others the way you wish to be treated. Being an engaged community member takes the same level of dedication to a cause bigger than you. Every person in the crowd couldn’t help but smile and clap as the homeowners said their thanks. The homes they’re moving into are a product of hours of work by individuals for a cause bigger than themselves. Thank you to the community of Espanola and every individual for every minute of work you put into these homes.

In the end, we spent about 8 hours on the road for a 1.5 hour ceremony and celebration. Standing in the cold as the families cut the ribbons as official homeowners was worth every minute on the road. It’s why we do what we do. To the Scheels and the Lacasse-Leonards; welcome to the Habitat family.

Be well, do good deeds, and keep in touch,

Students and their Elders both show support for Habitat!
Both youths and their elders are stepping up in support of Habitat for Humanity reaching their goal of building more affordable homes in the region.
This week, Habitat’s Director of Development & Communications - Britta Gerwin was presented with a cheque for $220 raised for Habitat by the Grade 4 and 5 classes of Una Pape, teacher at the Bracebridge Public School. The students donated the proceeds of their Christmas bazaar. The $220 will be used to help fund the upcoming build in Bracebridge.
“The donation is a wonderful surprise,” said Gerwin. “The students organized the event and donated the money all on their own initiative. It’s heartwarming to see children so engaged in the community. We’re simply honoured and proud to receive their thoughtful donation.”
A little further south, the Manor Retirement Residence in Gravenhurst kicked off its year-long fundraising effort with a presentation from Habitat. Residents, some of whom have helped build local Habitat homes in the past, were eager to learn about the organization’s plans for 2017.
The Manor’s residents and their families will be able to purchase Habitat Home cards to display throughout the building. The Manor will also hold a number of fundraising events throughout the year including their popular setup as part of the annual Gravenhurst Street Festival and Sidewalk Sale.
“This week we’ve been shown an incredible amount of support from the students in Bracebridge as well as the residents and staff of the Manor,” said Gerwin. “We hope to have both groups together and represented when we break ground in Bracebridge.”
Habitat Volunteer Kathy Yusko Receives Citation
Kathy Yusko became involved with Habitat when her employer, Genworth Canada, began another year of the Meaning of Home contest. Kathy worked with the Sudbury District Chapter and recruited teachers and students to help share their stories of home.

Now, years later, Kathy has been instrumental in growing both the Sudbury District Chapter and building a home in Espanola for two local families.

On Sunday, Feb. 5, following the key-turning ceremony, Kathy was presented with an official volunteer citation from Habitat OGN CEO David Morris and Sudbury District Chapter Chair Claudette Strom.

Thank you, Kathy! 
Habitat Northhumberland ED wins Business Achievement Award
Note: Meaghan Macdonald (pictured) recently invited Habitat OGN CEO David Morris and COO Meghan Smith to facilitate a strategic planning session for the Northhumberland Affiliate. We are One Habitat.

Story Here

COBOURG — Habitat for Humanity Northumberland executive director Meaghan Macdonald won this year’s William Crossen Young Professional Award.
The Town of Cobourg and the Northumberland Central Chamber of Commerce’s Business Achievement Awards (BAA) Committee announced Macdonald as the winner at a news conference on Feb. 1. The award, sponsored by the Cobourg Orthopedic and Sports Injury Clinic, will be presented at the 2016 Business Achievement Awards on Friday, Feb. 24. Macdonald, who has a role in the Northumberland Players Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat opening on the same night, will attend the opening of awards night and then head off to perform in the show at the Capitol Theatre, she said.
First introduced to Habitat for Humanity while away at university, Macdonald’s interest in Habitat for Humanity grew as she volunteered at local build sites and in the office. She was hired as an intern, and moved on to fill roles of recruiter, trainer, co-ordinator and construction manager. She was appointed executive director of Habitat for Humanity Northumberland in 2011 when she was just 25 years old — making her the youngest ever executive director within Habitat Canada. She has travelled to Ghana, El Salvador and Haiti to build houses as part of Habitat for Humanity Canada’s Global Village program.
“There were many deserving individuals nominated for this year’s William Crossen Award," said Rick Riley, past chair of the Chamber of Commerce and co-chair of the BAA Committee, “but even in that list of the best of the best, Meaghan Macdonald stood out.”
Surprised by the announcement, Macdonald said the award is an honour.
Although Habitat is nonprofit organization, it operates with a complex business model and Macdonald welcomed the award’s recognition of that fact.
Macdonald grew up in Northumberland but thought of moving to a big city for more opportunities. She is now committed to the goals of Habitat as it continues to thrive in Northumberland. This year, there are plans to build five new homes and help five families in the home renovation program, she said.
“I really love the direction of Habitat,” she said. “I am really committed to that.”
In addition to the demands of a full-time career, Macdonald currently serves on several volunteer boards and foundations, and, along with husband Joe, is parent to two-year-old Levon.
In 2012, the Business Achievement Awards Committee introduced The William Crossen Young Professional Award as a counterpart to the James Crossen Lifetime Achievement Award. Named after the founder of the historic Cobourg Car Works and his eldest son and successor, the awards are presented in alternate years in recognition of the founding fathers of the local business community. 

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