This Valentine’s Day I did something a little different. My husband and I volunteered on a Habitat for Humanity home build and it was amazing! We wanted to take a day and give back to the community and I was able to take advantage of one of my paid days of community service that I get through HSN Cares, the philanthropic arm of HSN. I learned a lot that day, aside from the fact that my husband is far more capable around a worksite than he’s been letting on…
There were other HSN Cares volunteers working with us on Valentine’s Day and, best of all, we got to work alongside some of the homeowners who were putting in their volunteer requirement or “sweat equity” as they call it! I loved getting to know some of the people I was there to help.
I had assumed that Habitat for Humanity gave homes away and the more I talked about it with others, I realized that most people also thought that was the case. Instead, Habitat for Humanity homeowners actually buy their homes. They put in hundreds of hours volunteering on their home and other people’s homes then are awarded a 0% interest mortgage with a small down payment based on need and ability to pay. They actually buy their homes, just at a better rate than they otherwise might receive.
I returned to work the next week excited to get to work on the HSN Cares Habitat for Humanity campaign to launch this June and learned that one of my coworkers, Karen, is a Habitat homeowner. When I asked Karen about her experience and the volunteers that helped her build her house, she told me “I was so marveled by people who came out to work on my house and am grateful for the opportunity to pay it forward”.
This May, I participated in my second home build and, so far, Habitat for Humanity has taught me how to set trusses and install insulation- who knew I could do that?! Again, Karen said it best. “I volunteered over 150 hours on my own home and other people’s homes. I know what’s in my house- I grouted, painted, put in cabinets. I can say ‘I did this’ and it really IS empowering.”
And that is what HSN Cares is all about. We are dedicated to empowering women and supporting families in times of need and are proud launch the HSN Cares Habitat for Humanity campaign in support of the vision of a world where everyone has a decent place to live.