Golfers Invited to Tee Off for Habitat for Humanity Choptank’s Event

(L to R) Golf Committee members Dr. Paul Brant, Abby Messick, Fred Haller (Co-Chair) & Brett Whitehead (Co-Chair)

Habitat for Humanity Choptank invites area golfers to swing their clubs and help build affordable, energy efficient homes in partnership with local working families. The nonprofit’s annual Golf Outing is slated for Friday, June 8, 2018 at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay in Cambridge, MD.

Funds raised from the event, including sponsorships and registration fees, support the home building program through which qualifying low-income individuals and families can purchase homes with affordable mortgages. Habitat Choptank currently has seven homes in progress between Cambridge, Hurlock and Easton and there are plans to begin six more homes in the coming year if the organization can raise the funds needed.  Over its 26 year history, Habitat Choptank has completed and sold 76 homes and the need for affordable housing continues to grow.

Habitat Choptank welcomes golfers and sponsors to be part of the organization’s mission of putting God’s love into action by bringing people together to build homes, communities and hope.  On the ground, that involves creating opportunities for hardworking local people to build a better future for themselves through the power of home ownership.

Golfers may enter as a twosome or foursome. The Golf Outing package includes a morning of golf, refreshments, and lunch with awards presentation. Golfers will also enjoy a putting contest challenge with a host of fabulous prizes. Sponsorship opportunities are also available.  To learn more about Habitat, to register for the golf outing, or inquire about sponsorship, contact JoAnn Hansen at director@habitatchoptank.org or by calling 410-476-3204.

Habitat Choptank and Lowe’s to Host National Women Build Week

Next week, Habitat Choptank and Lowe’s will host the annual National Women Build Week from May 5-13 where women volunteers and Habitat homeowners will unite nationwide to build up their communities and gain skills in home construction.

National Women Build Week encourages women nationwide to devote at least one day to help build decent and affordable housing in our local communities. Women have the strength and determination necessary to build Habitat houses, addressing the problem of affordable housing in a concrete way so that families can achieve stability and independence through safe, decent and affordable homes.

Habitat Choptank will be offering the following build days for volunteers to get involved for a full day or a half day.  The build days will be hosted at one of the following locations in Talbot and Dorchester County: Tuesday, May 8th or Wednesday, May 9th in Cambridge; Friday, May 11th or Saturday May 12th in Easton; or Friday, May 11th or Saturday, May 12th in Hurlock.

“Since 2012, Habitat for Humanity Choptank has been uniting strong women volunteers of all experience levels in our Talbot and Dorchester Counties to build or repair homes alongside our hardworking, empowered Habitat homeowners,” said Habitat Choptank Executive Director JoAnn Hansen. “We would like to thank our local Lowe’s for partnering with us to educate, inspire and empower women to build up their communities.”

In fact, according to a 2018 national study by Lowe’s and Habitat for Humanity, more than nine-in-10 American women believe providing and advocating for access to affordable housing for women can benefit society. The survey also found:

• Nearly all women (98 percent) agree access to affordable housing helps women heads of household thrive.
• Having a safe, stable home is a source of pride (96 percent) that makes women feel more confident (98 percent) and independent (97 percent).
• Three-in-five (62 percent) women say they cannot afford to purchase a home that meets their family’s needs in the neighborhood where they want to live.

“Lowe’s is proud to sponsor National Women Build Week to educate, inspire and empower women to volunteer alongside other women in their community to address the critical issue of affordable housing. We know women working together are an unstoppable force for creating meaningful change in our communities,” said Colleen B. Penhall, Lowe’s vice president of corporate social responsibility. “At Lowe’s, we believe that a safe, stable home is an important source of strength, pride and security for families. Together with Habitat, our Lowe’s Heroes volunteers and women nationwide, National Women Build Week will provide valuable support to advance accessible housing in the communities where we all live and work.”

Lowe’s and Habitat Choptank share the vision that every woman, man and child have a decent place to lay their heads at night. Far too often, low-income families are faced with choosing between paying their housing costs and buying basic necessities like food and medical care to provide for their family. National Women Build Week recruits, educates and inspires women to build, and advocate for decent and affordable houses in their communities alongside their future neighbors—making a difference in their community, one nail at a time.

Lowe’s helped launch National Women Build Week in 2008 and has brought together more than 117,000 all-women construction volunteers to build or repair homes with nearly 5,000 families over the past 10 years. This year, Lowe’s donated $2 million to Habitat for Humanity to support the 2018 National Women Build Week, and provides how-to clinics at stores to help equip women volunteers for the builds. Since 2003, Lowe’s has committed over $30 million to Habitat for Humanity International and helped more than 6,500 Habitat families improve their living conditions.

Both women and men of all experience levels can participate by signing up to volunteer or by joining the conversation online. As part of National Women Build Week, Lowe’s and Habitat are activating a social movement to generate conversation about building one another up and sharing the message of women empowerment, positivity and action by using #BuildHer and #WomenBuild. To volunteer or to find out specific job site locations, please call Nora Skiver, Volunteer Coordinator at Habitat Choptank, at 410-476-3204.

About Habitat for Humanity Choptank

Since 1992, Habitat Choptank has made home ownership possible for 76 families and currently partners with 15 local home buyers. Income qualifying individuals and families are offered access to affordable mortgage financing in order to purchase a new construction or rehabbed home from the nonprofit’s inventory of durable and energy efficient houses.  After completing “sweat equity” hours, attending pre-homeownership classes, and meeting debt reduction and savings goals, these individuals and families will purchase homes that they helped construct and assume the full responsibilities of home ownership including maintaining their home, paying property taxes and repaying their mortgage over 30 to 33 years. Habitat accepts applications for its home ownership program throughout the year.  For more information, to make a donation or volunteer, call 410-476-3204 or visit www.HabitatChoptank.org.

About Habitat for Humanity International

Driven by the vision that everyone needs a decent place to live, Habitat for Humanity began in 1976 as a grassroots effort on a community farm in southern Georgia. The Christian housing organization has since grown to become a leading global nonprofit working in nearly 1,400 communities throughout the U.S. and in more than 70 countries. Families and individuals in need of a hand up partner with Habitat for Humanity to build or improve a place they can call home. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage. Through financial support, volunteering or adding a voice to support affordable housing, everyone can help families achieve the strength, stability and self-reliance they need to build better lives for themselves. Through shelter, we empower. To learn more, visit habitat.org.

About Lowe’s in the Community

Lowe’s, a FORTUNE® 50 home improvement company, has a 60-year legacy of supporting the communities it serves through programs that focus on K-12 public education and community improvement projects. In the past decade, Lowe’s and the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation together have contributed nearly $300 million to these efforts, and for more than two decades Lowe’s Heroes volunteers have donated their time to make our communities better places to live. For the latest news, visit Newsroom.Lowes.com or follow @LowesMedia on Twitter.

Qlarant Management Team Support Habitat Choptank Efforts in Cambridge

Qlarant employees from across the nation were among more than 90 volunteers to join Habitat Choptank on Tuesday, April 24 in an effort to help revitalize a Cambridge neighborhood.  Mayor Victoria Stanley helped to kick off the afternoon addressing Habitat and Qlarant volunteers and staff present with words of welcome and gratitude and an overview of the City of Cambridge’s partnership with the State and Habitat to revitalize a specific neighborhood in Cambridge.  She was joined by Senator Addie Eckardt, Delegate Johnny Mautz, and Commissioner Cannon.

In addition to Habitat’s traditional home ownership program, Habitat Choptank offers low-income homeowners, in and around the neighborhoods where it builds, an array of housing services that include new builds, weatherization services, and critical home repairs through its Neighborhood Revitalization program.  Neighborhood Revitalization involves partnering with local residents, public officials, housing leaders, community groups and businesses to transform neighborhoods and enhance the quality of life in communities.  “On a community level, the Neighborhood Revitalization program addresses real needs and strengthens connections within the community,” says Rhodana Fields, Neighborhood Revitalization Manager of Habitat Choptank.

Mayor Victoria Stanley (front left)

With support from and in partnership with ShoreRivers, teams of volunteers worked together to clear invasive species and trash from vacant lots on High Street following a presentation by ShoreRivers on the importance of water quality and how all of these efforts make a difference in the positive improvement seen in the Choptank River.  Groups of volunteers, with Supervision from Habitat volunteers and staff, also helped build Habitat sheds for homes that are being built, insulate the foundation of a new home, rebuild garden beds and community composts at the Community Garden at Waugh Chapel, and assist with repairs to a resident’s fire damaged property.  Volunteers were also invited to tour a neighboring Habitat-built house to see the level of quality and efficiency in the homes built by Habitat Choptank.

Qlarant Chief Executive Officer, Ron Forsythe presented Habitat for Humanity Choptank with a $2,500 check to support Habitat in serving even more families.

“We are so grateful to have Qlarant here today supporting our mission,” says JoAnn Hansen, Executive Director of Habitat Choptank. “Our mission is much more than just building houses, it is about bringing people together to build communities and hope.”

About Habitat Choptank

Since 1992, Habitat Choptank has made home ownership possible for 76 families and currently partners with 15 local home buyers. Income qualifying individuals and families are offered access to affordable mortgage financing in order to purchase a new construction or rehabbed home from the nonprofit’s inventory of durable and energy efficient houses.  After completing “sweat equity” hours, attending pre-homeownership classes, and meeting debt reduction and savings goals, these individuals and families will purchase homes that they helped construct and assume the full responsibilities of home ownership including maintaining their home, paying property taxes and repaying their mortgage over 30 to 33 years. Habitat accepts applications for its home ownership program throughout the year.  For more information, to make a donation or volunteer, call 410-476-3204 or visit www.HabitatChoptank.org.  For more information about Habitat Choptank, to make a donation or volunteer, call 410-476-3204 or visit www.HabitatChoptank.org.

Habitat Choptank and Lowe’s National Women Build Week

For the 11th year, Habitat for Humanity and Lowe’s are engaging women nationwide to work together to build Habitat homes during this year’s National Women Build Week from May 5-13.

National Women Build Week, a nationwide initiative created by Habitat for Humanity and Lowe’s in 2008, has brought together more than 117,000 all-women construction volunteers to build or repair homes with nearly 5,000 families over the past 10 years. This year, Lowe’s donated nearly $2 million to Habitat for Humanity to support the 2018 National Women Build Week, which is set to take place in 300 communities nationwide.

Habitat and Lowe’s encourage all women to volunteer—no construction skills or experience in Habitat builds is necessary.  Since Lowe’s national partnership with Habitat for Humanity began in 2003, the home improvement company has committed more than $63 million to Habitat and helped nearly 6,500 families improve their living conditions.

“We’re excited to partner with Lowe’s to educate, inspire and empower women to advocate and help Habitat homeowners love where they live through building or improving an affordable place they can call home,” said JoAnn Hansen, Executive Director, of Habitat Choptank.  “We want to engage women of all skill levels to join their friends, families and neighbors to build up their communities and volunteer where women will gain invaluable skills to bring back and use in their everyday life.”

Carol Hill Miter practices using a hand saw with the support and oversight of an Easton Lowe’s representative.

“Lowe’s is in the business of helping people improve and maintain their homes,” said James Frison, Lowe’s Director of Community Relations. “Lowe’s Heroes have helped build hundreds of Habitat homes across the country and National Women Build Week is another chance for Lowe’s to reinforce our long-standing commitment to Habitat, Women Build and communities where our employees and customers live and work.”

In preparation for the build week, Habitat Choptank and Lowe’s are hosting “how to” clinics to equip volunteers with knowledge and skills in construction and home interior, basic safety techniques and what to expect when building a Habitat home.Lowe’s will host clinics at its Easton location on the following dates:

Saturday, April 28th at 9am: Household Garden Tools
Saturday May 5th at 9am: Paint and Trim

Habitat Choptank will be offering the following build days for volunteers to get involved for a full day or a half day.  The build days will be hosted at one of the following locations in Talbot and Dorchester County.

Tuesday, May 8th or Wednesday, May 9th in Cambridge
Friday, May 11th or Saturday May 12th in Easton
Saturday, May 12th in Hurlock

To sign up to attend a Lowe’s clinic or volunteer on a job site, please call Nora Skiver, Volunteer Coordinator at Habitat Choptank, at 410-476-3204.

About Habitat Choptank

Since 1992, Habitat Choptank has made home ownership possible for 76 families and currently partners with 15 local home buyers. Income qualifying individuals and families are offered access to affordable mortgage financing in order to purchase a new construction or rehabbed home from the nonprofit’s inventory of durable and energy efficient houses.  After completing “sweat equity” hours, attending pre-homeownership classes, and meeting debt reduction and savings goals, these individuals and families will purchase homes that they helped construct and assume the full responsibilities of home ownership including maintaining their home, paying property taxes and repaying their mortgage over 30 to 33 years. Habitat accepts applications for its home ownership program throughout the year.For more information, to make a donation or volunteer, call 410-476-3204 or visit www.HabitatChoptank.org.

About Lowe’s in the Community

Lowe’s, a FORTUNE® 50 home improvement company, has a 60-year legacy of supporting the communities it serves through programs that focus on K-12 public education and community improvement projects. In the past decade, Lowe’s and the Lowe’s Gives Foundation together have contributed more than $300 million to these efforts, and for more than two decades Lowe’s Heroes volunteers have donated their time to make our communities better places to live. For the latest news, visit Newsroom.Lowes.com or follow @LowesMedia on Twitter.

Habitat Choptank Board of Directors Creates Nancy Andrew Team Development Fund

From Left to Right: Nancy Andrew, Lolita Corsey, and Habitat Choptank Board President Charlie Bohn.

Volunteers, staff, homebuyers and community members met at Habitat Choptank homes for sale in Dorchester and Talbot counties to celebrate Nancy Andrew’s eight years of dedication and service to Habitat for Humanity Choptank and to wish her well in her future plans.

Charlie Bohn, President of the Board of Directors of Habitat Choptank, also announced the creation of an Endowment fund in her honor.  Bohn shared the purpose of The Nancy Andrew Team Development Fund is “to honor the legacy that Nancy leaves behind which is characterized by her profound appreciation for and encouragement of volunteers and staff.  Such an investment in those who do so much for our organization can only translate to a more effective and efficient delivery of Habitat’s programs and services, as well as lead to an increased satisfaction and enthusiasm on the part of staff and volunteers.”

Nancy Andrew was deeply moved by the tribute and shared her heartfelt thanks to those in attendance.  “At its core, Habitat is about a community of people coming together in common action: volunteers, home buyers, staff, donors and community partners. The relationships that we create in this effort are one of Habitat Choptank’s greatest resources.  While the Habitat mission is a simple notion of empowering people in need to build strength, stability and self- reliance through affordable home ownership, there are many moving parts that go into delivering on this. As we continue to expand our services, it’s critical that we invest in our people to make growth possible. It’s humbling that Habitat Choptank would put my name to a fund that will serve to support and nurture the people who make the mission so impactful.”

For those interested in contributing to the Nancy Andrew Team Development Fund, Endow Maryland tax credits are available and worth 25% of the contributed amount.  These tax credits are made possible through the Mid-Shore Community Foundation where Habitat Choptank will invest the funds.  Checks can still be made payable to Habitat Choptank, with Andrew Team Development Fund in the memo line, and mailed to PO Box 2366, Easton MD or dropped off at the organization’s main office which is located at 29350 Maple Avenue in Trappe.

Since 1992, Habitat Choptank has empowered 75 households from Talbot and Dorchester counties to build the stability, security and self-reliance that comes from buying a home with monthly mortgage that they can afford. Each home buyer contributed 300-400 hours of “sweat equity” in the building of those houses.  While selling its homes to mostly first time and even first generation home buyers, Habitat Choptank continues to maintain a less than 2% foreclosure rate with only one home foreclosed over the 25 year history. Currently, 12 buyers are working through Habitat’s multi-step program toward purchasing homes under construction in Cambridge, Hurlock and Easton.  For information about home ownership, to volunteer with Habitat Choptank or to make a donation, visit www.habitatchoptank.org or call 410-476-3204.

Open Houses to Honor Habitat Choptank’s Outgoing Director

Habitat for Humanity Choptank invites the community to two separate open houses to say thank you and farewell to outgoing executive director Nancy Andrew. The events will take place in existing Habitat homes that are close to completion from 5:30 – 7:30 pm. In Cambridge, guests can drop in at 1104 Mace’s Lane on Tuesday, January 23, 2018. The Easton open houses will take place at 233 Port Street, Unit 2 on Wednesday, January 24, 2018. To attend, community members are asked to RSVP to 410-476-3204 or info@habitatchoptank.org.

The Habitat Choptank Board recently named JoAnn Hansen of Cambridge as its next staff leader. Hansen follows Nancy Andrew who in October announced her plan to leave the organization in January 2018. This was timed so that an executive search committee could identify her successor and to have a productive transition. Andrew has served with the affiliate for over eight years including six as its executive director.

“Nancy has been a tremendous asset to our mission and its impact on the community,” says Charlie Bohn president of the board of directors. She led Habitat Choptank through the after effects of the economic downturn, growth of the home purchasing program, launch of a neighborhood revitalization program, expansion of the affiliate’s ReStore, and restructuring of the nonprofit’s balance sheet and funding sources.

Since 1992, Habitat Choptank has partnered with over 215 local households to improve a place they call home. Seventy-five of those are individuals and families who have purchased new or rehabbed homes from the nonprofit. Income-qualifying individuals and families are offered access to affordable mortgage financing in order to purchase a new construction or rehabbed homes from the nonprofit’s project inventory of durable and energy efficient houses.  After completing “sweat equity” hours, attending pre-homeownership classes, and meeting debt reduction and savings goals, these buyers will purchase homes that they helped construct and assume the full responsibilities of home ownership including maintaining their home, paying property taxes and repaying their mortgage over 30 to 33 years.

Currently, 12 local home buyers are working through the home ownership program. Seven homes are under construction at this time with plans to start at least six more over the coming year. While selling its homes to mostly first time and even first generation home buyers, it continues to maintain a less than 2% foreclosure rate with only one foreclosure over its 25-year history.

The other households served have partnered for weatherization and repair services since Habitat Choptank initiated its neighborhood revitalization program. In 2015, the nonprofit expanded its housing services with the implementation of a Neighborhood Revitalization program. Neighborhood Revitalization focuses on listening to residents’ challenges and aspirations within a target area and then creating partnerships to make changes that are important to those residents. Based on that input and identified gaps in community services, Habitat Choptank’s inaugural neighborhood revitalization program has focused on providing weatherization services and critical home repairs to income-qualifying households, many of them seniors, in and around the neighborhoods where Habitat builds.

To learn more about Habitat Choptank’s programs, to donate or volunteer, call 410-476-3204 or visit habitatchoptank.org.

Habitat Choptank Hosting Volunteer Recruitment Event

Community members in Dorchester and Talbot counties who are looking for ways to make a meaningful difference in the lives of others are invited to get acquainted with Habitat for Humanity Choptank. The nonprofit is hosting a volunteer recruitment event on Saturday, January 20, 2018 at its ReStore located at 8610 Commerce Drive in Easton.

“When people think about getting involved with Habitat, they generally think about our construction program,” says Nora Skiver, Habitat Choptank’s Volunteer Maryland Coordinator. Skiver, herself a volunteer, is completing a year of AmeriCorps service with the goal of engaging more volunteers in Habitat’s local mission.

“While home building is the most visible way people participate, there are a variety of ways that you can invest your time and talent into Habitat Choptank’s life changing work.” From volunteering in construction, helping at the ReStore, serving on a program committee, or lending a hand at the Habitat office, it all helps to make the dream of home ownership possible for more hardworking families.

“Habitat volunteers have a special place in my heart,” adds Skiver. She purchased her home from Habitat Choptank in 2014. “If you resolved to make a difference in this year, here’s your opportunity to get started.”

Information sessions will run on the hour starting at 10am to 2pm. Community members are invited to drop in during that timeframe. For folks who would like to learn more but cannot attend that Saturday, Habitat Choptank hosts monthly orientation sessions at its office in Trappe on a rotating schedule with both morning and afternoon sessions. That schedule is available on the organization’s website www.HabitatChoptank.org.

Habitat volunteers are men and women who come from all walks of life. Some bring with them existing skills to contribute in construction or helping with specific activities of the mission such as acquiring future properties for redevelopment or coaching home buyers through the home purchasing program. “For others, Habitat is a great way to develop new skills both on our build sites and assisting with the program,” Skiver notes.

This also applies to young people. Starting at age 15, students can volunteer at the ReStore, and at 16, they can join in on construction. “With signed permission from a parent or guardian, we can connect them with a hands-on way to build new skills and add something to their future resume.”

Since 1992, Habitat Choptank has empowered 75 households from Talbot and Dorchester counties to build the stability, security and self-reliance that comes from buying a home with monthly mortgage that they can afford. Each home buyer contributed 300-400 hours of “sweat equity” in the building of those houses.  While selling its homes to mostly first time and even first generation home buyers, Habitat Choptank continues to maintain a less than 2% foreclosure rate with only one home foreclosed over the 25 year history. Currently, 12 buyers are working through Habitat’s multi-step program toward purchasing homes under construction in Cambridge, Hurlock and Easton.  For information about home ownership, to volunteer with Habitat Choptank or to make a donation, visit www.habitatchoptank.org or call 410-476-3204.

Habitat Choptank Welcomes New Board Members

Habitat for Humanity Choptank has welcomed four new community leaders onto its volunteer Board of Directors. These members join with eleven other current directors in lending their time, talents and treasures to deliver on the Habitat mission in Dorchester and Talbot counties.

Local optometrist Paul Brant, owner of Cambridge Family Eye Care, LLC, brings a history of community and professional service with local, statewide and national organizations. Most recently, he was a director on the Dorchester County Chamber of Commerce to which he served a term as president.

Eric Lowery, a Technology Support Analyst with Chesapeake College, also has a strong sense of civic involvement. Among his various community roles, Lowery is a founding member and President of the Frederick Douglass Honor Society which was created in Talbot County in 2009.

From left to right, Eric Lowery, Paul Brant, Larry Neviaser, Phyllis Rambo, and Charlie Bohn, current board president.

Board members Larry Neviaser and Phyllis Rambo have been longtime Habitat Choptank supporters. Neviaser owned Neviaser Toyota Dodge in Easton for 26 years and was a partner in Automotive Restorations, Inc. / Vintage Racing Services in Connecticut until this year. He previously served on the affiliate Board from 1996 – 2004 and is a past president.

Rambo has been volunteering with Habitat Choptank since 2006. She has served as co-chair of the homebuyer selection committee, volunteered at the ReStore, and most recently chaired the Women Build House Committee. Prior to her retirement, Rambo was a project manager and principal consultant for Ciber Enterprise solutions in Colorado.

“Stable, secure housing is a challenge for many of our working neighbors,” says Charlie Bohn, board president. “Fortunately, experience has shown that better, affordable living conditions can help families build a brighter future for themselves. Our strategic plan is aimed at expanding the Habitat mission so that more parents and children can be part of this life-changing experience.”

Launched in July 2015, Habitat Choptank’s strategic plan provides a blueprint toward expansion for the board, staff and volunteers. It is the result of a more than 12-month review and planning process involving input from some 100 different stakeholders.

Goals in the plan provide guidance and direction for increasing Habitat Choptank’s traditional self-help home ownership program and for the addition of other housing services in the target communities where it operates. In response to identified community needs, the forecasted growth is both geographic and programmatic. Habitat Choptank will work concurrently in four communities within its two county service area – Easton, St. Michaels, Cambridge and Hurlock; operate at a level to complete at least eight home sales per year; build stronger neighborhoods through quality, sustainable new construction homes and rehabs, and through Neighborhood Revitalization; and develop well-prepared home owners using right-sized financing combined with education, support and relationships pre- and post-settlement.

For information, to volunteer, or to make a donation, call 410-476-3204 or visit www.habitatchoptank.org.

Terrapin Security is Habitat Choptank’s Business Partner of the Year

Habitat Choptank has named Terrapin Security as its Business Partner of the Year for 2017. Terrapin Security is a fully licensed and insured security system agency that has been securing the Eastern Shore for over a decade.

Habitat Choptank director of construction Wayne Suggs met with representatives of the company to present the honors. From L-R: Lee Coulby, Suggs, Dale Moore, and Jack Glessner.

“This award recognizes those businesses that are ongoing partners and have provided significant support to our affordable home ownership program,” explained director of construction Wayne Suggs at Habitat Choptank’s recent award dinner.  The collaboration with Terrapin Security started in 2012 when one of Habitat’s home buyer’s lost her job just weeks before the final certificate of occupancy on her new house. With the completed home sitting empty for months while the buyer searched for new employment, Terrapin Security agreed to install a security system to keep the property protected. That home buyer eventually found a new job and she bought the home. “Today she’s making her mortgage payment each month and Terrapin has continued to donate their services. We’re now 17 homes and counting.”

The company installs high quality, non-proprietary equipment which means the home owner can, but does not have to, use them for monitoring of the system. They also generously provide in-home training to the home owners after move in. “Terrapin is a committed partner who asks for nothing in return other than a small sign by the front steps of each home,” said Suggs.

For information about buying a home through Habitat Choptank, to volunteer or to make a donation, visit www.habitatchoptank.org or call 410-476-3204.  Terrapin Security can be reached by calling 410-822-6500 or going online to www.terrapinsecurity.com.

ReStore Presents Big Check to Habitat Choptank

Habitat for Humanity Choptank volunteers, staff and board members celebrated a milestone at their ReStore’s seventh anniversary event.  A ceremonial check in the amount of $669,849 was revealed representing the cumulative net income the discount home improvement center has generated since it opened in October 2010.  Funds raised by the ReStore are invested into Habitat Choptank’s mission and affordable home ownership programs in Dorchester and Talbot counties.

“We couldn’t have done this without such a supportive community,” said ReStore manager Chris Smith.  It starts with the donors – businesses and organizations, contractors and individuals – who provide an inventory of donated goods that changes daily.  Then there are the customers – collectors, crafters and artists, do-it-yourself types, and landlords – looking to improve their properties.

ReStore manager Chris Smith (left, shaking hands) with George Fox, vice-president on the Habitat Choptank board of directors.

And just as important, team ReStore which includes an equally diverse volunteer corps of men and women of all different ages who help with every aspect of the store operation. Smith adds, “our volunteers support the Habitat Choptank mission, help keep good usable stuff out of the landfill, and have fun in the process. I encourage others who want to make a difference in their community to consider volunteering here.”

ReStores are resale outlets run by local Habitat affiliates.  Habitat Choptank’s ReStore accepts donated construction materials, home improvement items and furniture.  These goods are sold to the general public at a fraction of the retail price providing funding to the affiliate for its operating costs which represents about 5-10% of its annual budget. With this unique source of revenue, funding from contributions and grants can be invested directly into the non-profit’s program costs including building homes and preparing the homebuyers.

The Habitat Choptank ReStore, located at 8610 Commerce Drive in Easton, is open Wednesdays – Saturdays for shoppers and donations.  The store also operates two box trucks which are available to pick up larger donations with advance scheduling from around the region.

Since 1992, Habitat Choptank has made home ownership possible for 75 families and currently partners with 12 local home buyers. Seven homes are under construction at this time with plans to start at least six more over the coming year. Income qualifying home buyers are offered access to affordable mortgage financing in order to purchase a new construction or rehabbed home from the nonprofit’s project inventory.  After completing “sweat equity” hours, attending pre-homeownership classes, and meeting debt reduction and savings goals, these individuals and families will purchase homes that they helped construct and assume the full responsibilities of home ownership including maintaining their home, paying property taxes and repaying their mortgage over 30 to 33 years. Habitat accepts applications for its home ownership program throughout the year.

For more information about the Habitat Choptank ReStore, to volunteer with the store or to inquire about making a donation, call 410-820-6186, email restore@habitatchoptank.org or visit www.HabitatChoptank.org.