This week I wrap up my career with Habitat for Humanity. It’s sad, I don’t want to leave, but those are the cards I’ve been dealt. In 5 ½ years I’ve witnessed 35 families purchase their homes and take on the responsibility of homeownership. I’ve worked with countless selfless volunteers who, like me, believe everyone deserves the opportunity for safe, decent housing. I’ve processed hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations from people who put others above themselves. I’ve made some really great friends that I will value for a lifetime.
Back in January of 2006, when I started my job there, I was surprised to learn that there are office politics at a non-profit. That not everybody is involved out of the goodness of their own hearts. Not everybody is doing it with community in mind. In turn, I learned that working at a non-profit is much like working for a corporation, but whenever the stress level elevated, I’d focus on the families. The children who would no longer have to move from home to home, school to school because of shaky rental situations. The adults, whose self-worth flourished while working through the homeownership program.
When I was hired, I was kinda broken myself, but Habitat kept me focused on the needs of individuals from the community who were less fortunate. Hard working families deserving of the rewards hard work should offer, but in our inflated society, aren’t otherwise able to attain. The focus was never on me, yet my heart opened further each year and my spirit grew stronger with each home dedication.
Habitat for Humanity is a Christian organization. I believe God gave me Habitat when I needed it most. It might take me awhile to figure out why it’s being taken away, but I’m going forth with an open mind and many beautiful memories. I’ll leave the not-so-nice memories in the bottom drawer of my desk.