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Our Expansion into Tolland County

Why did Hartford Habitat expand into Tolland County and other FAQs:

  • Why did Hartford Habitat change its name Habitat for Humanity of North Central Connecticut?

With our service territory expansion, we needed a name that appropriately reflected our connection to Hartford and Tolland counties as well as a regional approach; we will take going forward.   We feel that Habitat for Humanity of North Central Connecticut (HFHNCC) achieves those objectives and accurately reflects our grassroots base in north central Connecticut.

  • What does your expansion mean for activities in Hartford and Tolland County? Will you be relocating your offices?

We are dedicated to serving both counties and are looking to grow our staff to appropriately support our programs and initiatives in these communities.

For Hartford County, we have several home building and renovation projects lined up for 2022 including a ‘Build with Strength’ concrete home, the historic renovation of 315 Capitol Avenue, and four Zero Energy Ready homes in Windsor.

For Tolland County, we are focused on getting the Vernon ReStore operational, introducing ourselves to the community, establishing partnerships, and broadening the scope of our services to be a resource for community members. We have not dedicated any resources to initiating building projects within Tolland County at this time.

Our primary office will remain in Hartford. We will have an office space and dedicated resources for Tolland County operating out of the Vernon ReStore, which is located at 369 Talcottville Road in Vernon.

 

  • What was the reasoning behind the expansion – and why now?

It’s been proven through our decades of home building and community work that individuals and families thrive when they have a home in a safe and stable community.  With the housing affordability crisis continuing to touch every area of our society, Habitat for Humanity of North Central Connecticut saw the opportunity and need to expand our footprint and services to include Tolland County.  Our expansion allows us the opportunity to serve more families and to ensure that affordable homeownership is available throughout the state of Connecticut.

 

  • How does the ReStore in Vernon fit into the organization’s plan?

Habitat ReStores are home improvement and donation centers that sell new and gently used furniture, home accessories, building materials, and appliances to the public at a fraction of their retail price. Many who shop our store are new homeowners, DIY’ers, and those looking for great deals or unique finds. The store provides one way for the community to get acquainted with HFHNCC and our services. It will serve as our resource hub in Tolland County, and will eventually help fund homeownership programs in the area. The Bloomfield ReStore has sponsored a number of blighted properties in Hartford County.

 

  • What are HFHNCC’s vision and future goals?

Habitat for Humanity of North Central Connecticut’s vision, in alignment with Habitat for Humanity International, is for a world where everyone has a decent place to live. To accomplish this, HFHNCC is looking to move beyond being a home builder only as we are also an equity builder and neighborhood revitalization partner.  Our goal is to have our communities within which we work, and organizations with whom we partner see Habitat as a necessary partner in a community-based, family-centered, catalytic economic strategy.

 

Serving our Veterans

Gladys Berry

When Gladys met Private Samuel O. Berry Sr. in 1959, less than 2 years after his
discharge from the US Army, she never thought they’d be married for 55 years and have
3 children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. At 82 years young, she is aging in
place independently since the passing of her husband and doing well until her recent back
surgery in 2019.  She is not able to step into the tub to shower and is in need of a walk-in only shower that also has grab bars and a seat. With a recommendation from her Hartford HealthCare physical therapist & home health aide, a call was made to our Family Service department. After a home repair evaluation and a completed application, Ms. Gladys will soon be able to access her bathroom and be safe.

Fred and Cheryl Lesniewski
Fred, a Connecticut native joined the US Navy in 1971 as a machinist mate on the
submarine USS Patrick Henry (SSBN-599) where he had periscope liberty just once! After
4 years of service he returned where he met and married his wife of 41 years, Cheryl.
They purchased their home in 1978 and have lived there ever since. As they have aged
so has the house and with this year, in the midst of the pandemic, they have had several large areas of
repairs (furnace, water heater, failed appliances) that needed immediate attention.

Cheryl and Fred were overwhelmed and didn’t know where to turn when Fred, trying to step into
the tub to shower, became a challenge. There are also other bathroom repairs that need to be done,
including grab bar installation and flooring. Cheryl shared her concerns with her good neighbor & friend, Susan, who recommended Hartford Area Habitat. Susan’s son had volunteered with Habitat through their Church and said to give us a call. Through the spirit of friendship and Faith, they will soon have their bathroom repaired and a walk-in shower installed through our Hartford Area Habitat for Humanity’s Brush with Kindness program & partnership with the Home Depot Foundation.

Hartford Habitat for Humanity Selected as Grand Prize Winner

Hartford Habitat for Humanity Selected as Grand Prize Winner in Department of Energy’s Housing Innovation Award Competition

Community partnerships assist non-profit in zero energy building design

HARTFORD, Conn. (October 1, 2020) – Hartford Habitat for Humanity has been selected as the Affordable Housing – Single-Family Detached category Grand Prize Winner in the U.S. Department of Energy’s 2020 Housing Innovation Award Competition. The Grand Prize award was given in recognition for the work completed on Hartford Habitat’s Roosevelt Street, Hartford home, which was the non-profit’s first Zero Energy Ready Home.

“For our 30th anniversary, Hartford Habitat had a goal to build a home that makes homeownership more sustainable and affordable for our clients. Thanks to our community partners, including Eversource with their zero energy construction insight and energy efficiency expertise, we were able to make that dream a reality,” said Karraine Moody, Hartford Habitat CEO. “We are honored to receive this recognition and proud to be a part of a community that is dedicated to making sustainable construction available for everyone.”

“From consulting on energy efficiency to on-site volunteering and providing incentives and rebates, we have a long history of supporting Habitat for Humanity organizations and the excellent work they do throughout our region,” said Eversource Vice President of Energy Efficiency Tilak Subrahmanian. “To learn that Hartford Habitat’s Roosevelt Street home has received this national recognition is very exciting and serves as an example of how working together – we can achieve affordable, sustainable housing for all.”

Completed in May 2019, the 1,280 sq. ft., three-bedroom home features airtight construction, high-performance HVAC equipment, ENERGY STAR®-certified appliances, low-flow fixtures, a heat pump hot water heater, and solar panels. With a Home Energy Rating System (HERS) index of -7, the Roosevelt home is approximately 40 to 50 percent more energy efficient than a typical new home, saving the homeowners $4,000 in annual energy costs.

In addition to expertise, incentives and rebates, Eversource donated LED light bulbs and employees volunteered their time to support the home’s construction. Additionally, Eversource-approved contractor Home Energy Technologies, Peter Harding and David Hiscocks, helped educate and guide Habitat staff through the Zero Energy Ready Home requirements.

“We love our home! One of our goals was to become homeowners and have a positive environment for our kids – and we were able to achieve that with this home,” said homeowners Chris and Sharmane Walton. “Having an energy efficiency home has changed our lifestyle a lot, and we are grateful to Habitat, Eversource and everyone who volunteered and dedicated their time, their energy.”

To learn more about Hartford Habitat and Eversource’s partnership and construction of the Roosevelt Street home, please check out this short video.   The specification sheet is available here for download.

Advocacy for Housing

Dear Habitat Ambassadors:

Please take a minute to email Senators Murphy and Blumenthal urging them to support nonprofits and housing stability.  With the House recently passing its proposal for the next COVID-19 relief bill, the process has moved to the Senate to respond. As senators begin forming their priorities, NOW is the time for them to hear from us to ensure our recommendations are included in any Senate proposal.

One way we can do that is by garnering strong bipartisan support over the next few weeks for Senate bills related to our priorities. We want senators to co-sponsor two key bills — the Housing Assistance Fund Act and the Work Opportunities and Resources to Keep Nonprofit Organizations Well (WORK NOW) Act.

The Housing Assistance Fund Act would provide $75 billion to boost foreclosure and eviction prevention efforts in all 50 states. A similar version of the bill was included in the House proposal for the next relief package (the HEROES Act). This policy is also directly aligned with the goals of the Cost of Home campaign.

The WORK NOW Act would provide $50 billion for the nonprofit sector to scale much-needed services and help unemployed individuals get back to work.

It is our hope that with significant support for these bills, they will be included in the Senate priorities and ultimately a part of the final relief bill passed by both chambers.

Senator Murphy:  https://www.murphy.senate.gov/contact

Senator Blumenthal: https://www.blumenthal.senate.gov/gethelp

Rainbow Road-Windsor Public Hearing

On behalf of our Board of Directors and staff, we would like to thank everyone for submitting letters of support for the Rainbow Road subdivision during the public comment.  The Planning and Zoning Committee will review and make a decision at the June meeting.   Please stay tuned for more information as we work closely with the town.

Thank you again!

Build A Thon

Habitat for Humanity North Central Connecticut and 30 Greater Hartford Businesses 

Come Together to Our Annual Build-A-Thon 

Four weeks and over 600 volunteers ready to frame our homes! 

September 2022

For information on Build-A-Thon, please contact Makenzie Bahr at 860-541-2208.

Ambassador Training

Please join us in 2019 for one of our “Habitat Ambassador” workshop. This is an opportunity to partner with HFHNCC’s team. We will be hosting the event at the CT Non-Profit Center in Hartford at noon and a light lunch will be served. You will meet our leadership team and learn about the various ways to get involved, such as: becoming a family partner, crew leader, site host, internships, office support, ReStore volunteer and much more.

For more information, please email volunteer @hfhncc.org or call 860-541-2208 ext. 2201