Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity Celebrates Power of Partnership in Creating Meaningful Change
Four decades of life-changing work is punctuated with impressive statistics and heart-warming stories. For Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity on its 40th Anniversary, those statistics and stories speak to the enduring power of partnership. Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity (AAHH), initially named WNC Habitat for Humanity, was an early adopter of the “partnership housing” model introduced by Clarence Jordan and Millard Fuller on Koinonia Farm in Georgia in the 1970’s. The idea that someone in need of adequate shelter could work alongside community volunteers to build a house, and that the house would be sold at no profit, was revolutionary.
Since incorporating on February 11, 1983, thousands of local adults and children have benefitted from AAHH’s affordable homeownership and home repair program. Each home build and home repair project has been an exercise in partnership. Volunteers, donors, advocates, homeowners, and ReStore supporters – folks of various religions, ethnicities, socio-economic classes, and political beliefs – unite around a shared vision and build homes, communities, and hope.
Clarence Jordan (L) and Millard Fuller (R)
Those partnerships have helped change lives. “Data from a recent impact study confirms what we have long avowed – housing helps people thrive. It is a foundation for achieving full potential,” stated Andy Barnett, Executive Director. Lead researcher Dr. Jessica Auer adds, “What I found in the data and when talking with homeowners is that the benefits of affordable homeownership are profound, and compounding. For example, 84% of respondents described Habitat homeownership as having a positive impact on their finances. The financial results are considerable, but the impact does not end there. We see it in educational outcomes, health and well-being, and community engagement. The dreams that people tell us about in their applications – dreams of safety and security, of opportunities for growth, of building a strong financial foundation– those dreams are being realized.”
Asheville Area Habitat was the first Habitat affiliate in North Carolina. There are more than 60 today. The Asheville ReStore was also one of the nation’s first Habitat re-sale stores and proceeds have contributed to the affiliate’s mission since its inception in 1990. The ReStores also divert waste from landfills, provide the community with a low-cost source for home furnishings and building materials, and support living wage jobs. Furthermore, AAHH has donating more than $1M to support the work of Habitat for Humanity affiliates around the globe.
Asheville Area Habitat invites the public to help commemorate the 40-year milestone throughout the year. Opportunities include:
- Hide & Seek & Save! On Saturday, February 11, there will be “Where’s Waldo” fun at the Asheville and Weaverville ReStores. Find the hidden “Waldo” and save 40% off your total purchase that day. Staff will be re-hiding “Waldo” all day long!
- Contribute a story! AAHH is seeking Asheville Area Habitat stories, anecdotes, testimonials, and photos. If you have something to share, please let us know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Support our 40th Anniversary House with a $40 (or more) donation. Click here to give online.
- Stay tuned for a unique volunteer challenge for both existing and new volunteers.
- Be sure to follow us on social media.