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Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon
Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon
Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon
Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon
Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon
Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon
Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon
320 21st Street West
Saskatoon, SK, S7M 4E6
Phone: (306) 343-7772

Building Homes. Building Hope.

Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon helps low income working families achieve the dream of affordable home ownership. Habitat for Humanity uses a unique model, where multiple built-in revenue streams enable 100% of community donations to go directly toward building safe, affordable homes for local families in need.
We sat down with Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon CEO, Barb Cox-Lloyd, to chat about the processes that enable Habitat for Humanity to create lasting change in our community. Keep reading for personal stories from Barb and insight into the many ways that Habitat for Humanity positively impacts Saskatoon!
How does a local family qualify for a home?
We partner with families who have children, where at least one family member is working, and the household income is below $52,000. We hold information nights throughout the year, where families can begin the application process. It is required that partner families complete 500 hours of volunteer work prior to moving in. We call this "sweat equity", and it shows commitment like a down payment would in a traditional house purchase. We don't give away houses. There's a level of responsibility that our partner families must commit to.
Where do families spend their volunteer hours?
They can work on our build sites, or spend their hours working at ReStore. ReStore is our home improvement outlet store. ReStore is a place for anyone in Saskatoon to shop for quality new and used building materials and home furnishings. We are able to offer great deals on supplies and materials that have been donated to us for resale. Revenue generated from ReStore helps to fund our operations so that every dollar donated to us can go straight into home builds.
What are the other ways Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon generates the funds required to keep building homes?
We essentially run 4 businesses. We manage the mortgages for our partner families, which are interest free and adjusted to 25% of monthly income. We have ReStore, which is a big revenue generator. We also own our building, so we have a community of other businesses as tenants, which helps to offset administrative costs. All of these things combined enable us to put 100% of our donations into building homes.
What is your greatest need as an organization?
The biggest challenge is land availability and the cost of land. Therefore, the greatest need is always revenue through donations. It's a huge need.
Does this need vary by season?
We are building houses all year round, so we are always in need of funds to buy materials, or donated materials to build with.
What positive ripple effects occur for a family after moving into a Habitat for Humanity home?
CMHC did a study in 2004, which they repeated in 2012, and what they found is that there is less stress in the home, because there is less financial burden. Children are the major beneficiaries. They have better educational outcomes and better health outcomes. In many of our families, the stability of home ownership has enabled a parent to go back to school, which results in a better income. Families also become more involved in their community. They've learned that their community can help them, so they are motivated to help their community. The pride of home ownership extends beyond the walls of the house and into the surrounding community.
Can you describe an outcome you've witnessed that you didn't expect?
There are some intangibles that you don't really think about. I've heard from lots of kids how excited they are to have sleepovers. The kids are really proud of their new homes, and they are so happy that they can now have friends over to sleep. They couldn't have sleepovers before because there wasn't enough room, or they didn't want to bring their friends over because of the condition of their home. Its something I'd never thought of, but I've heard it from so many kids- "Now I can have a sleepover!" These are the kinds of things that you can't measure, but when you hear, you know you've done something really great.
We enjoy asking everyone this question: What do you love about Saskatoon?
I love working in this part of the city (Riversdale). It's vibrant here. Especially this area. I love that we have the river. I love the change in seasons. People are so positive.
Next time you decide to tackle a home renovation or repair, or are in the market for new furnishings, support our community by checking out the Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon ReStore, located at 122 Avenue D South! If you would like to contribute financially to Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon, you can do so online.
As part of My Saskatoon's One-to-One advertising campaign, Habitat for Humanity has been chosen by local Saskatoon business, J & S Picture Frame Warehouse, to be featured on Give Back Saskatoon. You can read our interview with Sherry Morris, owner of J & S Picture Frame Warehouse, using the link below.