Housing nonprofits still engaging with community to support missions

With social distancing preventing progress on most projects, nonprofits are focusing on other efforts
With most projects halted, housing nonprofits are focusing on fundraising and engaging with their communities. (Photo: Dave Bredeson, Dreamstime)

Housing nonprofits are calling for support as they navigate the many changes that COVID-19 measures have forced.

On Tuesday, the Home Builders Foundation asked for supporters to continue making donations, although social distancing efforts put a stop to HBF’s immediate projects.

“By confirming your support today, we will ensure that crucial funds are available to quickly distribute to the backlog of projects once we can resume operations,” HBF wrote in a statement.

HBF is taking steps to stay connected with its community and partners, and providing education on the virus and its impacts. Some of those efforts include sharing media resources about COVID-19, the housing market and the economy, communicating with partners so that clients aren’t getting confusing or conflicting information, and continuing to work with volunteers, sponsors and supporters on fundraising efforts “so that when it’s safe to resume projects again, we will be fully ready to take action, quickly,” Beth Forbes, executive director of HBF, said in an email to Colorado Builder.

The organization is working on sourcing grants to help in its fundraising efforts, as well as calling on supporters to continue their financial support.

“It’s challenging for us to physically support our clients right now, so in addition to the fundraising effort, we’re opening up conversations and sharing any information we get from our community with our HBF network through social media and our enews distribution,” she continued.

Lauren Knudson, community development director for HBF, stressed that for the vulnerable population the organization serves, social distancing could be especially dangerous to mental health.

“We are working on hard on spreading the word that social distancing could lead to isolation if we aren’t ready to step in when the time is right,” Knudson said. “We will be sharing daily on social media (Facebook and Instagram) how important the HBF modifications and accessibility solutions are to the recipients that we already served.”

HomeAid Colorado is collecting personal protective equipment, including masks and protective eyewear, to donate to health care professionals.

“We were recently made aware through the Leading Builders of America and our friends at Lennar, that medical professionals fighting the pandemic are in dire need of masks and protective eyewear. Supplies are running critically low. Without proper protective gear, medical professionals are at risk and potentially unable to serve those in need,” according to Cindy Bell, executive director of HomeAid Colorado.

HomeAid Colorado is working with Alpine Lumber to coordinate donation drop-offs. Unused gear can be left at any of the Alpine Lumber locations in the state during business hours.

Danielle Andrus

Danielle Andrus was previously the managing editor for Colorado Builder, and is currently Editor for the Journal of Financial Planning.

Danielle Andrus has 189 posts and counting. See all posts by Danielle Andrus

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