Nashville community welcomes Whirlpool to break ground, introduce families for ‘Building Blocks’
1 Week – 10 Homes – 1 Block
NASHVILLE, Tenn., (June 15, 2006) – On Thursday, June 15, at 11 a.m. at Providence Park, Nashville Mayor Bill Purcell, the Nashville Area Habitat for Humanity and Nashville Community Leaders will welcome Whirlpool Corporation to Nashville and will break ground on “Building Blocks,” a $1-million building blitz to construct 10 homes in one week on one block. NAHFH officials and community leaders will also introduce the families who will purchase these homes, and each will place the first building “block” for their house in the form of a sign that marks each lot.
Seeing their lots for the first time is an exciting moment for future Habitat homeowners because it makes their dreams of homeownership feel very “real” and gives them incentive to complete the hard work they began when they joined the program.
These 10 homes will be built in Providence Park in five days during the week of Nov. 4-11, 2006, with construction taking place around the clock. (Building a Nashville Habitat home typically takes eight days, spread across four weekends.) Based on best practices set by Habitat for Humanity International, Nashville Area Habitat was selected as the first affiliate to participate in this annual effort, sponsored by Whirlpool.
Providence Park is Nashville’s first all-Habitat community, quickly growing into one of the nation’s largest contiguous all-Habitat communities. Providence Park was started in 2003 thanks to the generosity and partnership of Centex Corporation and Hospital Corporation of America Inc. (HCA). The neighborhood now has more than 70 Habitat homes and a five-acre park that was funded by the HCA Foundation. The neighborhood will house 140 families by the end of 2007. The Building Blocks project will be the largest multi-home build in NAHFH’s 21-year history.
Three hundred volunteers will be selected to participate in Building Blocks: 100 employees of Whirlpool Corporation, 100 volunteers from Habitat for Humanity affiliates across the country and 100 volunteers from NAHFH’s local sponsors. Whirlpool Corporation is funding the construction of the homes as well as transportation, lodging and meals for volunteers.
“There is something really compelling in bringing all these people from across the United States together in community service for a whole week, and Whirlpool is privileged to be able to do this,” said Jeff Terry, senior manager of corporate commitment, Whirlpool Corporation. “People get a sense of the power of teamwork when they see these houses go from dirt and foundation to homes in such a short period of time. All 10 homes will be built by volunteers, most of whom have no professional experience in construction. What they do have is the will to put their own daily lives on hold for a week to create something that will change the lives of 10 families in need forever.”
A partner in Habitat’s work around the world, Whirlpool designed Building Blocks to engage people from around the country and raise awareness about Habitat’s mission to eliminate substandard housing. Each year the program will recognize an outstanding U.S. Habitat for Humanity affiliate by holding a weeklong build in the affiliate’s community.
Whirlpool is one of Habitat for Humanity International’s largest corporate sponsors and has donated a refrigerator and range to every new Habitat for Humanity home built in North America since 1999. Whirlpool plans to support every new Habitat home built globally by 2011, either through product donations, cash or home sponsorship. In addition to the Building Blocks event, Whirlpool and Habitat for Humanity will continue their affiliation with Reba McEntire in sponsoring, for the third straight year, her “Key to the Heart” concert series in Las Vegas to benefit Habitat.
Whirlpool Corporation is the world’s leading manufacturer and marketer of major home appliances, with annual sales of more than $19 billion, more than 80,000 employees and more than 60 manufacturing and technology research centers around the world. The company markets Whirlpool, Maytag, KitchenAid, Jenn-Air, Amana, Brastemp, Bauknecht and other major brand names to consumers in nearly every country around the world. Additional information about the company can be found at http://www.whirlpoolcorp.com.
About Nashville Area Habitat for Humanity
Nashville Area Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit, ecumenical Christian housing ministry that provides families with the life-changing opportunity to purchase a decent, affordable home. The agency has quadrupled in size since 2002 and is on track to build a record 35 homes in the 2006 calendar year in Davidson county. Qualifying families for the Habitat program purchase their homes at cost (usually $75,000-85,000) and repay the mortgage with no interest over a 20-30 year period. Additionally, families are required to accumulate “sweat equity” hours, earned through HomeWORKS classes, build site time, and community work or volunteering in some other aspect of Habitat operations, such as the Habitat HomeStores. The NAHFH HomeWORKS program provides more than 700 hours of classes for partner families on budgeting, credit management, mortgage finance, and home maintenance. These classes build each individual’s leadership, citizenship and life skills. To request an application or to receive more information about Habitat, call 615-254-HOME or visit www.habitatnashville.org. Major funding for Nashville Area Habitat for Humanity is provided by the Federal Home Loan Bank of Cincinnati, The Memorial Foundation, The HCA Foundation, The David and Sarah Ingram Advised Fund, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the LP Foundation.
About Habitat for Humanity International
Habitat for Humanity International, based in Americus, Ga., is an ecumenical Christian ministry that welcomes to its work all people dedicated to the cause of eliminating poverty housing. Since 1976, Habitat has built more than 200,000 houses in nearly 100 countries, providing simple, decent and affordable shelter for more than one million people. For more information, visit www.habitat.org.