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National Volunteer Week & Global Youth Service Day

As the spring ramps up and more and more volunteer opportunities become available with the warmer weather, there are two nationwide opportunities to re-engage and celebrate the volunteers that make everything possible: Global Youth Service Day and National Volunteer Week.

Home is the Key

Last week, Habitat for Humanity International launched Habitat’s first nationwide campaign, called Home is the Key. During the month of April, Habitat is bringing together sponsors, community leaders, and even celebrities to spread the word about the necessity for everyone to have a decent place to live. Together, we can raise awareness about affordable housing and help families in our communities find the strength, stability, and reliance that comes from having a safe place to live.

Learn more about the campaign here.

Hit it out of the park for Habitat!

Take me out to the ball game, take me out to the crowd…

Spring Cleaning can Help Habitat

If you’re anything like me, you are probably staring out the window, seeing the bright sunshine, and wondering why it’s not warm enough yet to open all the windows in the house, air everything out, and start spring cleaning. While the weather may be testing our patience, that doesn’t have to stop you from tackling some cleaning projects inside, while also helping your local Habitat affiliate.

Kick Start Your Garden Year!

Thinking about growing your own vegetables at home? Planting a vegetable garden has many benefits, including cutting grocery costs, helping create healthy and delicious meals, and teaching your family (and yourself!) that gardening can be rewarding and fun. While it is still a few weeks before the growing season bursts into full swing in Michigan, now is the perfect time to do some planning that will make your garden a success.

AmeriCorps Works - Celebrating AmeriCorps Week 2017

AmeriCorps Week is a time when we celebrate the impact and accomplishments of AmeriCorps members and programs across the country. Since 1994, the first year of AmeriCorps’ existence, over 1 million members have served with AmeriCorps to improve their local communities by improving access to basic needs like healthcare, housing, and education.

Preparing your Taxes

Tax season is well underway, and for many it is a crucial time to think about the family budget for the year. When you are working on developing a family budget, setting financial goals, and paying down debt, it is important that you consider how your federal, state, and city taxes can impact your finances. By following some simple steps, you can ensure that you get all your paperwork filed on time and maximize your return to help you towards your goals.

In Honor of Black History Month

In honor of Black History Month, I’d like to lift up two people who have had tremendous impact on my life and life purpose: Ms. Margaret Brown and Mr. Terrance R. Duvernay.

An Ode to Habitat for Humanity

On Valentine’s Day, we take time to recognize and celebrate the loved ones in our lives. That love is not just limited to one’s significant others; we can also take this time to show some love to the organizations and charitable causes that are near and dear to our hearts. Here at Habitat Michigan, our staff is celebrating Valentine’s Day by sharing what we love about Habitat for Humanity. (Photo image courtesy of Google.com, "Pangolin Love") 

Guest Blog: SpartanNash helping families in Michigan

SpartanNash Foundation supports 37 Habitat for Humanity Michigan affiliates during companywide fundraising effort

The SpartanNash Foundation – the charitable giving arm of SpartanNash and its family of Family Fare Supermarkets, D&W Fresh Market, Forest Hills Foods, ValuLand and VG’s stores – is hosting its annual fundraising effort to benefit local Habitat for Humanity affiliates, and you can help build hope and affordable housing throughout Michigan!

New Year, New Strategic Plan

The new year brings a struggle to write the correct year on documents and to keep new resolutions. At the same time, our minds also turn to new ideas and strategies for accomplishing our work. Many will embark on a strategic planning period.

Live from HOMES!

Greetings from northern Michigan, where our collective of construction experts have gathered at the 8th annual HOMES Green Building Summit!

A Day On, Not a Day Off

“Everybody can be great. Because anybody can serve. You don't have to have a college degree to serve. You don't have to make your subject and your verb agree to serve.... You don't have to know the second theory of thermodynamics in physics to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

Keeping your Identity Safe Online

Despite the widespread knowledge that our identities and data may be easily compromised by our password habits, many of us are still making mistakes when it comes to how we generate passwords for our many online accounts. Many of us use easily guessed passwords with minor variations, we use the same passwords over and over, and we put our passwords in unsecure locations – like the sticky notes found on desks or word documents saved on our desktop. People who have bad password habits are at greater risk for having multiple accounts breached.

The Good Forever

en·dow·ment  noun

1.     the action of endowing something or someone.

2.     an income or form of property given or bequeathed to someone.

Guest Blog: Saginaw-Shiawassee and Dow

Today's blog is the third of our three award winners of the Dow Chemical Company's blog contest, conducted in September. 

Dow’s Human Element, helping us take it from good to great! 

Volunteering, the ReStore, and You

Many people believe that the only volunteer opportunities in the ReStore are retail positions. While most of the volunteer positions in the ReStore are in fact related to retail, there is also a great need for people to take up volunteer positions that are technological that help support the ReStore and subsequently the Habitat for Humanity mission. These positions are great for Millennials and technologically savvy folks, specifically because these are things that they do every day.

A Home for the Holidays

As we enter the holiday season, celebrate Giving Tuesday, and prepare for the Advent season, we wanted to share a homeowner story to show why the work we do is so important. Happily, we had a successful Habitat story right in our own office. Antria Daugherty joined our staff in August as Executive Assistant, and she was willing to share her story and the impact that her Habitat home has had for her and her family.

DOW and Habitat for Humanity: Providing a Better Life for Homeowner Partners - Together

The Dow Chemical Company wanted to celebrate HFHM's 20th Annual Awards Banquet by giving away $20,000. We proposed a blog contest, focusing on the impact of Dow products on the families who we serve. Periodically, we will share the entries we received. This week's blog post is from one of the three contest winners.

Giving Tuesday: Give Back for the Holidays

If you know about the holiday gift giving season, then you probably also know about Black Friday and Cyber Monday: the days Americans get a jump on their holiday shopping. If you know about these two shopping days, you might continue to add to the list and include Giving Tuesday. Giving Tuesday is an innovative way that philanthropy tries to remind folks that during the holidays there are people and organizations in need. Amidst the holiday shopping frenzy, please don’t forget to give to the issues that are important to you in the community, state, nation and world.

Habitat Helping Veterans

This week, we are reminded to take a day and reflect on the sacrifices of the men and women who serve our country. We are told to honor our heroes, and to thank them for their service. Here at Habitat, we are also reminded of the ways that we are able to give back to those who have given so much of themselves.

Winter is Coming…Is your home ready?

Whether you love it or hate it, winter weather will be here before we know it. With the fun parts of winter (hot cocoa! The holidays! Sweaters!) also comes the dreaded parts…higher energy bills, slippery pathways, and difficult driving conditions. We can’t make the snow go away, but we can help you save some money and energy in your home with some home prep tips from our Sustainable Building Specialist, Thom Phillips!

Raise your Voice for Affordable Shelter with Habitat Michigan

What I love about the mission of Habitat for Humanity is that people join together in action. People of all race, faith, ethnicity, profession, politic, income, and background join together as one in service to their neighbor and as advocates with purpose. It is when we join together and build relationships toward a common goal and mission that people focus and work productively in peace and harmony.

Taking Control of your Credit

People often ask, “How can I raise my credit score?” The reality is that getting a credit score above 700 can be difficult, but knowing the factors that affect a credit score, as well as how to maximize the traits that improve a score, can assist a financial coach to help consumers raise their credit score fast. These factors are credit mix, amount owed, payment history, length of credit history, and recent applications.

Improving the Credit Mix: Credit diversity makes up 10% of your score

Celebrating AmeriCorps: They're One in One Million!

Since the first class of members started in 1994, over 980,000 people have served their communities through the AmeriCorps program. This month marks the start of a new class year for AmeriCorps members, and with this new year over 1 million members will have served!

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