By Briley Gargis
WARSAW – 500 for $500 is a new campaign that Habitat for Humanity hopes can be put to good use during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Habitat for Humanity is asking for 500 people (or couples, businesses, or churches) who will give $500 each for a total of $250,000.
Donations will help three Kosciusko County families who have already been accepted in the Habitat program and are awaiting construction of homes.
“They are families who are in need of safe, affordable housing, have gone through a rigorous selection process, fall within the financial parameters of our requirements, have jobs that allow them to pay a 0% mortgage, and are willing to be mentored and attend classes to prepare them for homeownership,” said Mickey Kaufman, Habitat for Humanity executive director.
Like hundreds of other entities, Habitat’s operations are also being affected by the pandemic.
“The ReSale Outlet is closed, but Habitat partners remain dedicated to helping families secure decent places to live, shelter that they can afford, and where they can be safe,” Kaufman said. “The pandemic is temporarily holding back volunteer and fund-raising efforts. This crisis, though, will pass, and we plan to be in a position to pick up where we left off — in fact, to pick up with even more drive and energy in efforts to help our community.”
Construction of a Habitat home in Warsaw was also delayed.
“Since we couldn’t have volunteers on the site to build, the actual building of the home in progress in Warsaw was slowed greatly,” said Kaufman.
Kaufman also said donations to the build “dried up” due to people’s fears about their financial situations.
“This campaign was designed to get donors back on board as well as to incite giving from people who haven’t thought about the housing needs for lower-income families in our community,” Kaufman said. “Family applications have continued to come in and actually have increased in number. There are more people that can’t find adequate, affordable housing in our county. That hasn’t changed – except for the number of applications we are seeing.”
Donations can be given at Habitat for Humanity’s website. Checks can also be sent to P.O. Box 1913, Warsaw IN 46581-1913, designated to the “500 at $500” Campaign.