SPONSORED CONTENT

Habitat for Humanity

In the Business of Helping People Out

Mandy Sotelo
jampo@mandysotelo.com
Posted 4/2/20

Habitat for Humanity Is In the Business of Helping People Out

And now under executive director Kevin Miller, who has been leading the team in Taos since July 2019, Habitat for Humanity of Taos wants to help even more people out.

And so far, they are on track with doing that.

You have exceeded your story limit for this 30-day period.

Please log in to continue

Log in
SPONSORED CONTENT

Habitat for Humanity

In the Business of Helping People Out

Posted

And now under executive director Kevin Miller, who has been leading the team in Taos since July 2019, Habitat for Humanity of Taos wants to help even more people out.

And so far, they are on track with doing that.

Prior to Miller’s time as executive director, Habitat for Humanity of Taos on average built one house every two years for a family in need in its 26 years here.

Now, under Miller, the team is on track to finishing four houses in a year.

“One thing we are trying to change is our footprint within the town,” Miller said. “We want to have a big impact on the lower-income community here in town.”

So far, the Habitat for Humanity of Taos team has broken ground on two of the four houses this year, and they plan on completing them as soon as the coronavirus pandemic — which has shut down many businesses and organizations worldwide — ends.

They have a unique way of approaching the builds as well. It’s called a “competition build,” with two homes being built at the same time. The idea is to generate community involvement in the town. Much of what Habitat for Humanity of Taos does is illustrated on its Facebook page.

Prior to the pandemic, Habitat for Humanity of Taos had hosted a slate of colleges and their respective Habitat for Humanity organizations – all of which were early helpers in constructing the first two homes this year. Representatives from schools such as Carroll University, Ohio State, Moravian College and Seton Hall University had made their way to Taos.

While things have come to a halt in building due to the coronavirus, Miller said that he and Miriam, one of the few staffers, plan to build more of an online presence, which he hopes will be a two-fold endeavor in the end — for people in and around town to know the group’s impact now and in the future, and to hopefully help with the income to sustain it during a time like this.

“It’s still in our heart to be building right now,” Miller said.

The ReStore shop in town, which is Habitat for Humanity of Taos’ main source of income, is closed because “it’s the right thing to do.” But it doesn’t mean that it’s closing shop online.

In fact, Habitat for Humanity of Taos ReStore is online now!

Recently, the organization had received two donated stoves from Tractor Supply Co. in Ratón. Habitat for Humanity of Taos plans on selling them online soon as a source of income.

Miller said being able to work hand-in-hand with other nonprofits and organizations like DreamTree and Stray Hearts is a blessing, and it helps better the community in the long run.

Those same organizations help each other, too. Habitat for Humanity of Taos helped construct adobe dog houses for the team — and the dogs — at Stray Hearts. The group also assisted DreamTree with putting up a new fence.

“We all work better together as a team,” Miller said. “I think it’s vital to remember the impact on the community we can all have together.”

Mark Trujillo, Habitat for Humanity of Taos’ building manager, has been laying bricks on his own at those two homes that have been put on halt, because “he is passionate about moving partner families into forever homes along with Mike Virga,” and wants to help in any way he can. That soon may come to an end, too.

“I wouldn’t be able to do what I do here without this amazing team,” Miller said. 

Habitat for Humanity of Taos currently accepts building materials or cash donations to help with future projects.

You can find out how to donate by going to the organization’s website at taoshabitat.org.

“I know it’s a hard ask right now with the stock markets going crazy and people laid off, but this is a time to rally together,” Miller said. “We are all in this together. The impact can still be made. We are going to come out of this a better organization.”

But Miller knows that he and his Habitat for Humanity of Taos team’s main goal is finishing up the four homes for those families in need. That’s still the goal in the end. “I believe we are a success because of our amazing team and we do have staff available on hand for questions related to Habitat for Humanity of Taos. Debbie, our office manager is working from home, Hannah Eisenberg is grants and loans as we speak and Thomas Drake is still managing operations at the ReStore.”

“The real story is about getting those families into those homes,” Miller said. “It breaks my heart a little bit right now. But we are working behind the scenes to make sure that as soon as we are able to start up, [we can.]”

Comments


Private mode detected!

In order to read our site, please exit private/incognito mode or log in to continue.