Spring 2020 Edition
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, Habitat for Humanity of Chester County’s utmost priority is protecting the people and communities we serve, and that has meant closures, cancellations, and postponements for our everyday activities. We have temporarily closed the ReStore, postponed our Build a House…Build a Dream annual fundraiser and halted any sponsored builds at the construction sites.
For some, the words “shelter in place” create a different crisis when you don’t have a safe shelter to protect your family. Donors like you have helped us build affordable homes for 31 years, and now, more than ever, it is crucial that we continue our mission.
Throughout this difficult time, we have learned that the key to moving forward is by working together. With your support, we are not just helping to build a house. You are ensuring families have safety, security and hope for a brighter future.
Thank you for your continued support. We pray for you and your families safety and health during this unprecedented time.
A HEARTFELT FAREWELL TO TWO OF OUR FRIENDS
Earlier this year, Habitat for Humanity of Chester County said goodbye to two staff members who have been with the affiliate, for collectively, 27 years. Executive Director Chip Huston decided to step down from his role after 17 years, and Bobette Meeter announced her retirement as Director of Family Services after ten years. During his 17 years as Executive Director, Chip’s leadership and advocacy in the community helped increase HfHCC’s impact on the need for affordable housing in Chester County. During that time, Habitat volunteers and donors built 92 homes in partnership with families in need. Outside of Chester County, Chip and his team participated in two trips to Louisiana, building three houses for Hurricane Katrina victims, and worked on the 2007 Jimmy Carter Work Project in Los Angeles.
As for the future, Chip will be taking time off to consider the ways that he can continue to contribute to the community. “It’s been a long year, and I need to get back to my full capabilities. I am not done helping people in Chester County. It’s my home and a place I love. One of the best places to live, work, and raise a family in the United States. A door is closing, but God has a plan, so I look forward to the window He will open.”
As Director of Family Services for ten years, Bobette helped 47 families achieve the dream of homeownership. Her lifetime experience in the banking world and genuine kindness towards anyone and everyone brought positive energy to the HfHCC office. Bobette was there from the time that families first submitted their applications to dedication day, making sure they all had the tools they needed for success as new homeowners. She also consistently helped out at the Driving to Build Golf Outing and the Build a House…Build a Dream event where her humor pushed everyone towards the finish line of very long days.
Bobette plans to continue giving back by volunteering at the Chester County Food Bank while enjoying retired life with her husband and kitties. She is excited to finally have time to work on all the DIY projects she has accumulated from the ReStore over the years and keep perfecting her already amazing baking recipes.
On behalf of the HfHCC staff, homeowners, and friends throughout the community, we say thank you to our friends Chip and Bobette. We wish you both good health and happiness!
VIWINCO PROVIDES WINDOWS FOR 5 NEW HOMES
Through the loyal support of donors like Mr. David J. Barnes, President of Viwinco, our mission thrives. Viwinco made a very generous commitment to Habitat board member Mike Cappelletti, pledging to donate the windows for the first five homes in our new Fuller Meadows community in West Grove. Mr. Barnes began his relationship with Habitat for Humanity of Chester County more than 15 years ago when he helped on a build site in West Chester. Having grown up in Chester County, he has strong ties to the community and its neighboring Habitat affiliates. He feels strongly that his role as a business owner is to be “good to the community” by giving back what he can to those in need.
He believes in Habitat’s mission and our focus on the affordable housing crisis. “Habitat is greater than what people know about it,” Barnes said, adding that he understands how difficult it can be to get the word out that our homeowners invest their sweat equity and hard-earned income into the purchase of their homes. As he puts it, they “have skin in the game” and that makes all the difference in their ability to appreciate and sustain the low-cost mortgages. Mr. Barnes loves our goals because “the people get involved, the people give back, and we need to always help those that have less.” His philanthropic spirit and dedication to helping others are demonstrated in both his community relationships and personal commitments.
Mike has known Dave “Barney” Barnes for over 20 years, reflecting, “Dave has always been engaged in the community as a volunteer, supporter, and philanthropist. He has been a big part of the success of our builds in Coatesville for many years. We are grateful for his personal and Viwinco corporate support!” Thanks to Mr. Barnes and Viwinco, our future homeowners in West Grove will come home to safe, stable, and secure homes with a great view of their future through Viwinco’s windows.
WEST GROVE HOMEOWNERSHIP
Five townhomes are under a roof at the West Grove construction site! We are currently accepting applications for anyone interested in owning one of these brand new townhomes that feature:• Brand new • 1,680 square feet • 3 Stories • 4 Bedrooms • 2 Bathrooms • 40 unit community• Starting at $175,000 • $0 down • 1-3% 30-year USDA mortgage • Family income ranging from $43,700-$92,250
For more information visit www.hfhcc.org/westgrovesite
Where: French Creek Golf Club, 4500 Conestoga Road, Elverson
When: Monday, September 14, 2020. Registration opens at 9 AM, shot gun start at 10:30 AM.
Registration: $400 for an individual golfer or $1,500 for a foursome and two tee signs.
Includes a continental breakfast at registration, on-course food stations for lunch, and gourmet food and cocktails, a silent auction, and awards to follow after golf.
NEW EMPLOYEE SPOTLIGHT: SUSIE JAMES
Susie James was born and raised in West Chester and has lived in Chester County for most of her life. She grew up on a farm in East Bradford Township, where her father had his veterinary office. She was always surrounded by some sort of four-legged critter. As children, she and her sisters were lucky enough to ride horses and started fox hunting at an early age. It was one of her favorite ways to spend time as a family. Susie has two wonderful sons that she’s incredibly proud of. Both live close by, so Susie gets to see them often.
Since moving to Coatesville, she joined Doe Run Presbyterian Church, where she has served as a Deacon and Elder and sings with the choir. Susie says, “Through my church, I am also a volunteer with Family Promise of Southern Chester County…another wonderful non-profit organization whose mission is to alleviate homelessness.”
Susie’s professional life holds nearly 25 years of progressive experience in the Healthcare IT field, working for Shared Medical Systems, Siemens Health Services, and Cerner Health Services. She says, “I’m absolutely thrilled to be a part of Habitat for Humanity as Director of Family Services where our vision is the hope that there will be a world where everyone has a decent place to live. By seeking to put God’s love into action, we bring people together to build homes, communities, and hope.”
From everyone at Habitat for Humanity of Chester County, welcome to the team, Susie!