Twenty years have passed since the Greater Mount Airy Area Habitat for Humanity broke ground on its first home, and 39 families later it’s marking that milestone in a special way.
The organization has kicked off a “20 Years of Building Hope” campaign in which contributions are being sought from the public to further that objective. And while fundraising efforts by non-profit organizations are nothing new, this one has a twist.
“We have just launched a campaign where we’re trying to find 1,000 people to give $20 or more donations to help us toward fulfilling our mission this year,” Habitat Executive Director Lynn Wilkes explained.
The idea of honoring its 20th anniversary by soliciting contributions of that sum arose from an annual planning retreat of the organization’s governing board which was held earlier this month.
“It was introduced then and that’s pretty much when it was launched,” Wilkes said. “It is a year-long campaign.”
All money will go toward the building of homes for deserving families, who don’t receive them for free but have mortgages at zero-percent interest. Recipients of Habitat for Humanity houses also must contribute “sweat equity” by working alongside community volunteers who construct them.
“We’re trying to build six homes this fiscal year,” Wilkes said of an ongoing program that has benefited nearly 40 families since the local Habitat for Humanity set up shop in 1993.
The first home was erected on Forrest Drive in Mount Airy, and since then others have sprung up at additional locations in Mount Airy and communities including Pilot Mountain and Dobson.
Habitat for Humanity is now starting its latest house project at a site in Pilot Mountain, Wilkes said.
How To Help
The Habitat official said a variety of ways exist for area residents to aid the campaign. Contributions can be mailed to the Greater Mount Airy Area Habitat for Humanity at P.O. Box 6449, Mount Airy, NC 27030. They also can be made in person at the Habitat headquarters at 813 Merita St., located across U.S. 52 from Mayberry Mall.
An effort also is under way to make it even easier for donors by allowing contributions to be designated online. This method is expected to be available by the end of February, Wilkes said.
The campaign’s progress will be charted through the use of a “thermometer”-type display at the Habitat ReStore on Merita Street, where used household and other items are sold to raise money for building homes.
Reach Tom Joyce at 719-1924 or firstname.lastname@example.org.