There’s a common philosophy, often used in therapy and health, that says, “Progress isn’t linear. Progress is full of twists and turns, ups and downs, backtracks, and side loops.”
As we find ourselves halfway through an incredibly difficult, stressful, and startling year, it’s a philosophy that I find myself applying to just about everything. At HomeAid, it’s become our daily mantra, as we move forward in entirely new ways and remind ourselves that in spite of the way we’ve had to get here, we are moving forward. We are progressing.
We’ve completed three projects this year, are currently working on five more, and have eight more in the pipeline. As an essential industry, our homebuilders and trade partners are throwing themselves into their work, not backing away from helping us help those who need it most.
We’ve postponed and changed events, but with careful planning and important mitigation strategies, we’re finding ways to make them work. I never would have dreamed I’d one day celebrate a ribbon cutting with a drive-by trade appreciation event, but we’ve done it. Our Board is keeping the business end moving forward via Zoom. We have branded masks to hand out at our upcoming socially-distanced BBQ. Our Housing Forum is a go, whether we’ll end up in-person or on-line. And donations to our ‘HomeAid150Campaign’ have repeatedly reminded us that together, we can make a huge impact in small ways.
Your support is more important than ever, and your actions over the last six months have made it clear: There is no one else I’d rather be #InThisTogether than with you.
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At press time, Northern Virginia had entered Phase 3 of its COVID-related reopening plan, and we at HomeAid Northern Virginia are continuing to make plans for our 11th Annual Builders & Friends BBQ on August 13, at the Barn at One Loudoun! With plenty of room to spread out at this outdoor venue, we are working hard to make all the necessary modifications to ensure everyone’s safety, including widely spaced tables, individually boxed meals, sponsored masks given out at registration, and plenty of sanitation stations. We have limited capacity available (a maximum of 250 per state guidelines), so register today!
What won’t need modification are the things that have made our BBQ a longtime favorite: The announcement and celebration of our Trade Partner of the Year, great food, live music, an open bar (with single-use glassware!), and great raffle prizes. Another key benefit will also not change: HomeAid’s BBQ is one of our community’s most valuable events for networking with top leadership in the homebuilding industry, for both builders and vendors, and for showing support for our mission of ending homelessness.
“All businesses receive requests for charitable contributions, but breweries seem to get more than their share … and as a small business in Loudoun County, our resources are limited,” said Graham Burns, chief financial officer for Old Ox Brewery, which donates the always-popular wheelbarrow of beer raffle prize, along with Home Depot, every year. “We like to make sure that what we are able to give has as much impact as possible, preferably in our own community, and HomeAid Northern Virginia’s approach makes sense to us. They are able to harness the resources of local builders and trade partners to assist non-profits in providing shelter and housing for those in need. The result is a healthier and stronger community, and all of us benefit from that. Our donation is a fun and meaningful way to say thank you to those who help HomeAid Northern Virginia to complete their mission year in and year out. We thank them for the work they do on behalf of our community, and we thank HomeAid Northern Virginia for making it all possible.”
Register today, and we hope to see you on August 13! Each ticket is just $50, unless you are a Builder Captain, trade partner, supplier, or subcontractor that has participated on a HomeAid project in the last year, in which case you are eligible for TWO FREE BBQ registrations! (Contact Cilda Pretorius for more details.)[divider line_type=”Full Width Line” line_thickness=”1″ divider_color=”accent-color”]HomeAid’s very first project was the complete overhaul – inside and out – of a shelter for Alternative House (now Second Story) that at the time was serving 2,000 youth experiencing homelessness per year. Since then, we’ve worked on four additional projects with Second Story (2012, 2013, 2014, and even a playhouse in 2020), two projects with Youth for Tomorrow (2015, 2016), and one project with ASPIRE! After School Learning (2019).[divider line_type=”Full Width Line” line_thickness=”1″ divider_color=”accent-color”][divider line_type=”Full Width Line” line_thickness=”1″ divider_color=”accent-color”]
HomeAid Northern Virginia, Dan Ryan Builders, and three trade partners are closing in on the completion of a $70,000 renovation project for the Winchester Rescue Mission, where they installed new flooring throughout the 4,500 square-foot building, repainted the entire interior, and replaced bathroom flooring and tiling throughout. The team also plans to add lockable storage shelving and an outdoor shed, as well as low-voltage wiring to improve a security system, by the end of the month.
The result is a game-changer for the Rescue Mission, which provides sleeping quarters for 33 men, as well as meals, job training, and medical care, in a 1930s building in the downtown historic area of Winchester, VA.
“We serve roughly 1,200 people a week through our food distribution program and 150 to 200 meals every day,” said Vicki Culbreth, development director for the Rescue Mission. “We also provide laundry and showering facilities for anyone who needs it. That’s an enormous number of lives to impact, and it just feels so good and so exciting to walk in and feel great about where you’re working. The cafeteria is probably the most incredible example, with luxury plank replacing a really ugly concrete floor with layers of peeling paint … it’s a beautiful facility now, and all of the other changes allow us to service people more fully and more efficiently. It’s been an amazing experience and a true gift – HomeAid and its team listened to every single thing we said, and they exceeded every expectation start to finish. This building is a source of pride for our whole community now, and we are so grateful.”
“We didn’t start the project until after COVID hit back in March, and I was fully expecting the trades to say they needed to hit the pause button,” Jenkins said. “But that wasn’t the case at all – across the board, the attitude from the trades was that this was not the time to pull back on projects like this, and all three – Exceptional Choices, Century Tile, and Chesapeake Applicators – were all in from the start. It’s been incredibly positive – and especially rewarding since this is our first project. It was a good time for us to get involved, and we have projects in Winchester so already have people on the ground there. I believe in the mission of the organization, and the scope was a good size for our first venture – this all worked out really well.”
Brandan Thomas, executive director for the Rescue Mission, admits to feeling overwhelmed by the impact of the project and its transformation on the building and the people it serves. “So often,” he said, “we try to just do the best with what we have, never daring to dream about how much better it could be. This project has changed that – it’s functional and beautiful now, and I’ve seen firsthand how the people we serve are now taking ownership and pride in the place they live and eat. They’re more intentional about cleaning, they’re pushing each other to clean … everyone feels more pride in a space that looks this way. That’s incredibly exciting to me.”
Thank you to First-time Builder Captain Dan Ryan Builders; Trade Partners Exceptional Choices, Century Tile, and Chesapeake Applicators; and welcome to our community, Winchester Rescue Mission![divider line_type=”Full Width Line” line_thickness=”1″ divider_color=”accent-color”]On a single night in January 2019, 37,085 veterans were experiencing homelessness. In 2018, we had the honor of partnering with Final Salute to renovate a residence serving formerly homeless and vulnerable female Veterans and their children, and we are currently working with Operation Renewed Hope to renovate one of their homes to better serve their Veteran clients with a projected completion later this summer.[divider line_type=”Full Width Line” line_thickness=”1″ divider_color=”accent-color”][divider line_type=”Full Width Line” line_thickness=”1″ divider_color=”accent-color”]Thursday, September 3, 2020
HomeAid Northern Virginia’s FREE Housing Forum – postponed from May 14 to September 3 – will be a go, although we will make any necessary modifications in response to COVID-19 protocols. Our goal is to hold the meeting in-person, but please stay tuned to ensure you don’t miss out on this important meeting; learning to deal with stress and trauma has never felt more relevant, and we look forward to bringing our speaker experts to you.
The workshop-style day will focus on suicide prevention, trauma-informed care, mental health and wellness, mindfulness, and overall self-care for providers who work with clients experiencing homelessness.
Keynote Speaker Kevin Hines, author of Cracked Not Broken, Surviving and Thriving After A Suicide Attempt, global public speaker, and award-winning documentary filmmaker of Suicide: The Ripple Effect, will share his story, marked by his attempt to take his life by jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge. When he became one of the one percent to survive, he decided to bring his story of hope, healing, and recovery around the world, teaching people of all ages the art of wellness and the ability to survive pain with true resilience.
We will also welcome Gina White, a mind-body practitioner, the daughter of two first responders, and founder of Mindful Junkie, a non-profit dedicated to teaching first responders how to manage reactions, notice impulses, and work through emotions – in the moment, and when they go home.
“The topics covered in this year’s meeting feel especially critical, as we’ve all tried to get used to our ‘new normal’ under intense stress,” said HomeAid Northern Virginia Executive Director and CEO Kristyn Burr. “The things so many of us take for granted – work and child care, for example – were radically changed, and while hardly to the level so many of those we serve deal with on a daily basis, it’s been an important reminder that we are sometimes powerless to control our own circumstances. The importance of caring for ourselves – in addition to caring for others – took on new meaning, and it’s with this new perspective that I think our Housing Forum will be especially powerful and illuminating. Self-care allows us to provide care while remaining mentally healthy.”
Save the date and watch for registration information soon; registration is free, but capacity may be capped depending on how we are able to deliver the Forum. Stay tuned![divider line_type=”Full Width Line” line_thickness=”1″ divider_color=”accent-color”]In 2009, we renovated a home in Woodbridge, VA, for families experiencing homelessness; renovated 12 individual apartments and a children’s activity center at Catholic Charities’ St. Margaret of Cortona Transitional Residences in 2018; completed a top-to-bottom, inside-and-out renovation of Catholic Charities’ Christ House in Arlington, VA, housing 14 single men, a food pantry, and a nightly soup kitchen among other services; and are currently working to complete the renovation of the St. Martin de Porres Senior Center in Alexandria, VA.[divider line_type=”Full Width Line” line_thickness=”1″ divider_color=”accent-color”][divider line_type=”Full Width Line” line_thickness=”1″ divider_color=”accent-color”]Since 2001, we’ve completed 150 projects; invested $18 million in building a better community; donated $11 million in labor, time, materials, and expertise; and have changed 167,000 lives for the better. Help us celebrate this incredible milestone – and help us with our next 150 projects – by supporting the HomeAid150Campaign today! By donating just $1 for every project we have completed, you can support our mission of building new lives for those experiencing homelessness in Virginia.
To double the impact of every dollar donated, HomeAid Northern Virginia’s Board of Directors is offering a dollar-for-dollar matching gift, up to $25,000![divider line_type=”No Line”][divider line_type=”No Line”]
Smita & Rohit Anand
Steve & Melissa Bruce
Greg & Elizabeth Carter
Michael & Donna Holleran
Lauren & Jonathan Kinnard
Jason & Jessy McDonough
Russel & Ellen Rosenberger
Mike & Rachel Sandkuhler
Jeff & Pamela Smith
[divider line_type=”No Line”][divider line_type=”Full Width Line” line_thickness=”1″ divider_color=”accent-color”][divider line_type=”No Line”][divider line_type=”No Line”]For the last several years, HomeAid Northern Virginia’s Builders & Friends BBQ has featured a familiar face, as Todd Canape has not only donated the alcohol for our popular open bar, but who has also volunteered throughout the entire event to bartend! Canape, an account manager for Republic National Distributing Company (RNDC), plans to return to this year’s BBQ, and we’re already looking forward to enjoying his signature drink mixes and conversation. We always say there are countless ways to support HomeAid Northern Virginia – read on to find out more about one of our most unique supporters!
Q: How did you originally find out about HomeAid?
A: I met Kristyn Burr, Executive Director and CEO of HomeAid Northern Virginia, at Ciao Osteria in Centreville, where I learned about HomeAid’s mission. Kristyn and I became friends, and I’ve loved learning about the extensive charitable work she does – she’s a truly inspiring person to know!
Q: What has your experience been at the BBQ … and why do you keep coming back?
A: I looked more into the organization and learned how HomeAid has helped numerous families escape the cycle of homelessness. I’ve always felt very fortunate in my life, and I wanted to do what I could to contribute to their cause. Serving at the annual BBQ felt like the perfect way to combine my career with my interest in giving back – and along the way, I’ve learned even more about the people and organizations that also support HomeAid’s mission. It is incredible how much this organization has done to better the lives of individuals and families in need, and I’m proud to play my part.
Q: What do you enjoy most about volunteering?
A: I love meeting and interacting with new people who are also involved in the charity, and seeing how their efforts give families a fresh start to their lives.
Q: Tell us more about Republic National Distributing Company (RNDC).
A: I work for Proximo Spirits, through RNDC, as a key account manager. I’ve been with the company for almost 10 years and have always respected their outreach initiatives. Like all companies, we’ve had to pivot and adjust to the COVID climate. Proximo Spirits and RNDC’s other partners have used their faculties to produce and donate hand sanitizer, face masks and other necessary tools to our various clients. We’re happy to support the businesses that have been so good to us over the years, and we look forward to continue doing business in an ever–changing atmosphere.[divider line_type=”Full Width Line” line_thickness=”1″ divider_color=”accent-color”]Spreading Smiles
Help us build our impact! Since 2015, we’ve collected well over 2,000 backpacks and school supplies – and in recent years, thousands of diapers and wipes for our community’s youngest citizens. Let’s keep it going with our Amazon Wish List, which makes contact-free collection drives that much easier. Shop today for formula, diapers and wipes and back-to-school backpacks, and we’ll take care of distributing them to our shelter partners for their clients.
HomeAid Northern Virginia’s Board of Directors enjoyed their first in-person meeting in three months, when they joined together for a socially distanced outdoor meeting in July at the Creighton Farms Golf Club. After finishing up board business, the crew headed out to catch up and reconnect with a round of golf, courtesy of John Buhl.
Welcome to the HomeAid Northern Virginia family, and thank you for your generous $5,000 donation, Doug and Maureen Webster! We are so glad you found us, and we look forward to demonstrating to you just how impactful your generosity is to our mission.
Tip of the hat to Wells Fargo, for the incredibly generous $10,000 grant, to M&T Bank, for your $3,500 grant, and to Enterprise Foundation for your $1,000 donation! Thank you also to Giant Food for the $135 donation in connection with your Community Bag Program. All will go a long way toward helping individuals and families build new lives.
ISO Summer and Fall Interns
Do you know someone looking for real-word experience with a busy office? Please send them HomeAid’s way: We are looking for summer and fall interns in our marketing, events, and shelter program departments. Because we’re a small office, our internships mean that students do the real, boots-on-the-ground work. This isn’t a filing and photocopying internship! Remote work options available. Find out more – and apply – on our website.
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11th Annual Builders and Friends BBQ – NEW DATE: Thursday, August 13, The Barn at One Loudoun, Ashburn, VA (Registration and Sponsorships Now Open!)
Brunch with Benefits – Presented in partnership with The Construction Management Podcast, NEW DATE: Sunday, August 16, Lost Rhino Brewing Company, Ashburn, VA (10% of proceeds go to benefit HomeAid Northern Virginia!)
Housing Forum – NEW DATE: Thursday, September 3, (This event is geared towards those who work in the field. FREE with registration. Registration is now open!)
K. Hovnanian Trade Partner Council Golf Tournament – Friday, September 11, Westfield Golf Club, Clifton, VA (All proceeds to benefit HomeAid Northern Virginia!)
6th Annual Golf Tournament – Friday, September 18, Raspberry Falls Golf & Hunt Club, Leesbury, VA (Registration and Sponsorships Now Open!)
SN Mortgage Benefit Trap Shoot – Friday, October 2, Bull Run Shooting Center, Centreville, VA (Details coming soon – proceeds to benefit HomeAid Northern Virginia!)
Women in Building Industry Spring Networking – NEW DATE: Thursday, October 15, Paradise Springs Winery, Clifton, VA (Collecting home essential items for HomeAid’s Helping Hands program.)
19th Annual Gala & Auction – Saturday, November 14, Lansdowne Resort & Spa, Leesburg, VA
In this newsletter:
Executive Director & CEO Corner
HomeAid’s Builders & Friends BBQ: Celebrating the Best of the Industry, Safely
HomeAid Northern Virginia, Dan Ryan Builders Transform Winchester Rescue Mission
HomeAid Northern Virginia 2020 Housing Forum: Addressing the Mental Health Crisis
Bartending, BBQs, and Finding New Ways to Support HomeAid