On Friday, November 17th Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the grand opening of their newest ReStore, Habitat’s resale store and donation center. “ReStore South,” located in the former Bartz’s Party Store in Greenfield, is Milwaukee Habitat’s third ReStore in the county, joining the non-profit’s Wauwatosa and Walker’s Point locations. In the past year, Habitat’s two existing ReStores raised nearly half a million dollars to help local families in need of safe, affordable housing. By reselling donations of furniture, appliances, cabinetry, and home improvement supplies to the public, ReStores have not only become the single largest fundraiser for Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity, but the stores prevent millions of pounds of usable materials from ending up in local landfills each year. Greenfield and surrounding area residents will now have a local option to donate and shop reusable home supplies, supporting Habitat’s efforts to revitalize disadvantaged Milwaukee neighborhoods through safe, affordable housing opportunities.
Brian Sonderman cuts the ceremonial ribbon
Milwaukee Habitat Executive Director, Brian Sonderman, was joined by Greenfield Mayor Michael Neitzke, Habitat Board President Craig Hahn, and ReStore Director Larry Starkey for the ceremony in front of a crowd of eager shoppers in the store’s new donation center.
“When you’re shopping, donating, or even volunteering here at ReStore South, know that what you’re doing is more than just finding a new home for a used couch. Because of you, local families will be able to afford a safe, decent place to sleep at night,” said Sonderman.
Milwaukee Habitat has served more than 1,000 families in the Greater Milwaukee community through new construction, rehab and repair programs and provided housing solutions for more than 1,800 families in developing countries.
How To Get Involved:
ReStore offers a free pickup service for large donations like furniture, appliances, cabinetry and more. Pickups can be scheduled online BY CLICKING HERE or at 414-316-5651.
ReStore offers Deconstruction Services, salvaging usable materials prior to demolition and remodeling projects. Since 2012, the team of primarily volunteers, has salvaged nearly $2 million worth of reusable product. In many instances, these items would have otherwise ended up in local landfills. Find out more HERE.
ReStore is seeking volunteers with a passion for thrifting and a desire to help families in need of safe, affordable housing. Signup online BY CLICKING HERE or call 414-366-0853.
On Friday, November 17th, Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity is excited to announce it will open its third ReStore!
“ReStore South,” Milwaukee Habitat’s newest resale store and donation center, is located at 4150 S. 108th St, Greenfield in the former Bartz’s Party Store location.
All are invited for a ribbon cutting ceremony at 9:30am on Friday, November 17th, followed by light snacks and refreshments as ReStore South opens its doors for business! Greenfield Mayor Michael Neitzke will join Milwaukee Habitat Executive Director, Brian Sonderman, and others in the opening ceremony.
ReStores have become one of Milwaukee Habitat’s largest fundraisers to help local families in need of safe, affordable housing. Each year, more than 12,000 donations of furniture, appliances, cabinets, and building supplies are resold to the public at Milwaukee’s ReStores with proceeds benefiting our mission. Last year alone, Milwaukee’s two ReStores (in Wauwatosa & Walker’s Point) sold more than $1.5 million in donated product to help Habitat build safe, affordable homes.
Not only does ReStore raise significant funds for Habitat’s mission, but they divert roughly 5 million pounds of usable materials away from local landfills each year. In fact, Milwaukee’s ReStores even offer a Deconstruction Services team which salvages usable materials from residential and commercial properties prior to rehab and demolition.
ReStore South is in need of donations and volunteers for their new Greenfield location. Here’s how you can help!
Donate furniture, appliances, cabinetry and more! ReStore offers free pickup service for large donations. Schedule online by clicking the button, or call our donation hotline: 414-316-5651.
Milwaukee Habitat’s experienced and insured Deconstruction Services crew salvages reusable items from residential and commercial buildings, saving you time and money. Schedule a free no-hassle assessment today by contacting Jake Weiler, 414-316-5658.
VOLUNTEER: Sign-up for a pre-opening tour of ReStore South and learn about volunteer opportunities, Habitat’s mission, and receive a free gift! To register, complete the form below.
Isha & Osman helped build their own home and pay an affordable mortgage.
In the Washington Park neighborhood, this city-owned foreclosure sat vacant, decaying. Left in ruins by the former tenants, a gang of drug dealers who brought violence to the neighborhood. Partnering with the Milwaukee Police Department, the criminals were extinguished from the property, but the home was in desperate need of repair.
Working with Alderman Russell Stamper II, Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity acquired the home through Stamper’s RICH Program. This neighborhood nuisance would soon be transformed into a safe, affordable home
With support from companies like Wells Fargo and We Energies, the home began its transformation. Future homeowners Isha & Osman worked alongside volunteers constructing their home-to-be, affectionately known as “The Deer House.”
The family, including their eight children, had been living in a cramped three bedroom apartment. As former Somalia refugees, this home will not only mean more space for their large family, but the stability of having a home to call their own.
On this block and throughout the blocks where we’ve built in the Washington Park neighborhood crime is down 48% as Habitat families move into safe, affordable homes. Together, we can build a world where everyone has a decent place to live.
WE NEED YOUR HELP TO REHAB MORE PREVIOUSLY CITY-OWNED FORECLOSURES:
Sargento Foods is celebrating the 25th anniversary of partnering with Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity. In 1992 Sargento became Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity’s first corporate “blitz build” sponsor. Since then, more than 810 Sargento employees have helped to build 27 Milwaukee-area homes and have donated approximately 16,200 volunteer hours.
Sargento embraces a company-wide passion for charitable giving and supports many nonprofits in and around Southeastern Wisconsin, with a focus on food and shelter.
After working primarily in the Washington Park neighborhood since 2013 as part of a holistic neighborhood revitalization strategy, more than 215 families now have safe, affordable homes in the neighborhood and crime has decreased 48% on the blocks where we’ve built.
Together, we plan to replicate those successes in communities east of Washington Park over the next three years. Throughout this three-year plan, we will be developing relationships and finalizing plans to transition our work into the Harambee neighborhood, an area of the city where the average family makes about $20,000 a year and the need for affordable housing is great. Watch and find out more in this video as we’re joined by key partners Komatsu Mining Corp, Thrivent Financial & Wells Fargo. READ ALL ABOUT IT IN OUR LATEST NEWSLETTER BELOW!
On Tuesday, June 6th Milwaukee Brewers All-Star Ryan Braun helped Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity kick off their build season in the Washington Park Neighborhood. Braun spoke in front of a large crowd of volunteers who were on site to help completely frame five new construction homes and rehab three previously foreclosed homes during Milwaukee Habitat’s week-long June Blitz Build (6/5/17-6/9/17). Brewers Community Foundation is the presenting sponsor of Milwaukee Habitat’s June Blitz Build. The Blitz kicks off a build season where Milwaukee Habitat will serve 35 families in need of safe, affordable housing through new construction, home rehab, and critical home repair.
The Brewers have been involved with Milwaukee Habitat since 2006. Joining Braun on the Blitz Build will be employees from local businesses: Accunet Mortgage, MGIC, First Weber, Hupy & Abraham, Thrivent Financial, Fiserv, Exit Realty Horizons and WE Energies. These businesses are partnering with Milwaukee Habitat in 2017 to provide both funds and volunteers to help build safe, affordable homes in our community.
“Ryan Braun and Brewers Community Foundation are making it possible for families in Milwaukee to afford a decent place to live,” says Milwaukee Habitat Executive Director Brian Sonderman, “With so many in our community living in unsafe, unaffordable, or overcrowded circumstances, it’s inspiring to see the Brewers and local businesses come together to strengthen our neighborhoods.”
Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity could not function without the dedication of thousands of volunteers each year. Thanks to these individuals’ generosity, time, and hard work we can help families in need of safe, affordable housing in Milwaukee and around the globe. Each year, we take time to recognize those volunteers who go above and beyond to further our vision of building a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Here are 2017’s Volunteer Awards Winners, honored on May 10th at our Annual Volunteer Appreciation Party:
Grace Morgan Volunteer of the Year – Brie Skolaski
Bryanne Skolaski , or Brie as we know her on-site and around the office, first started with Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity in May of 2012, when she joined HYP (Habitat Young Professionals). That September she joined us during the Build Week, and fell in love with Habitat – the mission, the people, and the work.
Brie has volunteered countless Saturdays as part of HYP, as well as an individual volunteer. This coming June will also be the 6th Build Week that Brie has participated in. She has been on 5 Global Village trips (four of them to El Salvador, and one to Guatemala; the last four trips she has lead). Brie has been on the HYP Board since 2014, first as the Global Village Chair, and now as the Chair.
“Every time I volunteer, I find myself in awe with the amount of kind, caring, compassionate people in this world, who give their time to help others. Building with Habitat isn’t just about building a house for someone, its about building a home, and helping them change their lives.”
ReStore Volunteer of the Year – Mary Nash
Mary has been volunteering at the ReStore for over a year and a half.
People that work with Mary know that she is very versatile! Especially in the recent months, she has shown an eagerness to jump in wherever she is needed to lend a hand.
In addition to learning how to process items in different departments, Mary was willing to jump in to cashier training to be able to help at the front.
Her friendly personality and passion for the Habitat mission adds so much value to the store. Mary supports the ReStore and the Habitat Mission not only by volunteering her time, but by donating her used items. Thank you, Mary, for all you do to help the ReStore!
Golden Hammer Award – Jim Lambe
Jim Lambe has worked with Milwaukee Habitat in one way or another since the Fall of 2008.
He started as an AmeriCorps member and worked as one for two years, where he developed his construction and site leadership skills alongside other AmeriCorps members and volunteers. Jim loved Habitat so much that even after we stopped paying him, he still came out! Jim is now one of our Habituals who comes out several days a week, when he isn’t traveling around the warmer parts of the country in the winter months, but we miss him when he’s gone!
In 2015 Jim took another step along his Milwaukee Habitat journey by joining our Board of Directors. Jim continues to be a huge asset on site where he is not only willing to do pretty much anything, but he is happy to lead others while doing it!
We are so happy to have Jim as one of our loyal construction Habituals, and look forward to his continuing participation at Milwaukee Habitat – on the build site, in the board room, and beyond!
Nuts & Bolts Award – Clark Higgins
Clark Higgins began volunteering with Milwaukee Habitat in 1993, when a friend of his introduced him to Jean Leslie, who asked if he could help upgrade the accounting system from Quicken to QuickBooks, and he agreed to help.
At that time he was also the Treasurer of the United States Curling Association and had just completed the installation of QuickBooks as their accounting system, so he was very familiar with the process.
Clark enjoyed getting to know Jean, Ann Van Dunk and the rest of the Habitat team, so it was only natural for him to continue to volunteer with us as an accountant.
We have grown from no in-house accountants to a great team today, and we cannot thank Clark enough for being part of our team here at Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity!
Clark says, “I have seen Habitat grow over the years. From an office in the Next Door Foundation building, to North Avenue, to Booth Street. It has been an amazing success story.”
Habitat Hero – Robert Cagle
Robert Cagle, Jr. is a Habitat homeowner, father of six, and is a Habitat Hero in his community, closing on his home in November 2016. Robert does not shy away from hard work: since the beginning of his partnership with MHFH Robert was eager to complete his Sweat Equity, which was completed in 8 months with many more hours not taken into account. Robert enjoyed working at the different build sites and he volunteered whenever he was off, donating those extra hours to other Partner Families who needed them. Even after doing all the work he has done with Milwaukee Habitat, Robert still makes time to serve others.
Robert has really been an asset to the WP neighborhood, by partnering with Washington Park Partners (WPP), as well as being a leader in the community and for the youth in his neighborhood. As Robert was preparing to close, he was also working with WPP to plan and organize their 1st Annual Christmas Dinner and Gift Giveaway for the children of Washington Park, which was a huge success. This event inspired Robert and his sister to begin mentoring the youth in the WPP neighborhood. They have started the groundwork for an afterschool Teen Club. This Teen Club will give youth an opportunity to plan events in the neighborhood and provide them with productive things to do to impact the lives of others. Even though Robert is a new homeowner he continues to mentor new homeowners in the program, and is always willing to be a spokesperson for Habitat.
Check out photos from our Volunteer Appreciation Party
On May 13, 2017, Milwaukee Habitat united family and friends to commemorate and honor the memory of Milan Jordan, daughter of DeeAnna Brown. Acknowledging what would have been “Milan’s Sweet Sixth Birthday” DeeAnna hosted a “mama and me” photo session with the theme being, “Life and Motherhood are the sweetest treats.” First time home-buyer and 1,000th Habitat family served in the Greater Milwaukee area, DeeAnna moved into her new ADA compliant home this past June in the Washington Park neighborhood.
Proceeds will benefit families of children with special needs in Milwaukee Habitat’s homeownership program.
We’re happy to announce the event raised $750! Thanks to DeeAnna for hosting the event and to all who participated!
This spring, help us build better homes that create brighter futures. Because everyone deserves a decent place to live.
We just marked another productive year, helping 36 families in Milwaukee build and repair their very own places to call home. It’s now time to dig in and continue this momentum in 2017. Every single one of us deserves the opportunity for a better life, but we need your support.
Although we have made great strides in our efforts to eliminate poverty housing in Milwaukee, our work is not nearly finished.
This is by far our most important campaign of the year. So much of what we do for families in 2017 depends on the support we are able to raise right now.
Many of us go about our daily lives not having to worry about whether our basic needs are going to be met. We don’t have to choose between eating a healthy meal and buying medicine for our child, who is sick with the flu.
It is easy to forget how fortunate we are to have a decent place to live. And it is easy to forget the faces of the many hardworking people we encounter every day in Milwaukee who don’t. They are trapped in unaffordable, overcrowded, or substandard conditions that no family or child deserves.
It could be the clerk at your local grocery store who helps bag your groceries… or the bus driver who gets your children to school safely every day… or the car wash attendant who hands you your keys with a smile. These are the people who work hard to enhance the quality of our lives.
Your gift today is not only an investment in a Milwaukee family. Your donation is an
investment in our entire community.
This spring, you can help more families and individuals stand on their own. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay affordable mortgages. Please help create brighter futures by giving what you can today – every dollar makes a difference!