Bruce Eric Anderson
Habitat for Humanity International
Habitat for Humanity unlocks access to homeownership through seventh annual Home is the Key campaign
ATLANTA (April 3, 2023) — Twenty-five years ago, a historic neighborhood in west Rochester, NY was a different place than it is today. What once was an area broken by violence and crime, pervasive poverty, vacant lots and abandoned homes is now a more engaged and safer community, due in part to an unfortunate tragedy.
In 2001, 10-year-old Tyshaun Cauldwell was sitting on his bike outside on the street where he lived and was struck and killed by drug-related gunfire not intended for him. The senseless loss of innocent life moved the City of Rochester, residents and social service organizations to make a change. Within weeks, city officials and community partners formed the Jay Orchard Street Area Neighborhood Association (JOSANA) to transform the community’s grief into multigenerational investment and opportunity.
In 2011, Greater Rochester Habitat for Humanity committed to building 100 new homes in the JOSANA neighborhood within a half mile of Enrico Fermi School No. 17—where Tyshaun attended middle school. The affiliate fulfilled that promise in early 2022 with the completion of the 100th home. The local housing nonprofit has now begun conducting home repairs in the JOSANA neighborhood and have already begun revitalization projects in the nearby EMMA & Beechwood neighborhoods.
Edwin and Erwin Mageary, twin brothers and long-standing Habitat construction site supervisors, add window boxes to Lissette’s home. She was the first person to buy and move into one of the 100 homes built near School No. 17 by Greater Rochester Habitat for Humanity. Habitat Humanitarians Drew and Jonathan Scott added a bit of flair with an engraved note of encouragement.
The JOSANA neighborhood is just one of many examples of Habitat’s commitment to building a world where everyone has a safe and decent place to live. Today, Habitat is furthering that commitment by helping unlock equitable homeownership through its seventh annual Home is the Key national cause marketing campaign. Throughout the month of April, three of Habitat’s cause marketing partners – At Home, The Home Décor Superstore, Kum & Go, and Resideo Technologies, Inc. – are providing financial support, product promotions, and their voices in support of Home is the Key.
Returning for its seventh year as a Home is the Key sponsor, At Home will donate 100 percent of proceeds from the sale of its Habitat for Humanity Gifts that Give Back, to Habitat for Humanity. For their tenth cause marketing campaign with Habitat, Kum & Go is inviting customers to support Home is the Key by making a donation at checkout. Additionally, for every Kum & Go branded bottle of water sold in April, 10 cents will be donated to Habitat. Kum & Go has also pledged a minimum of $500,000 to support Habitat this year. From April 1-30, Resideo will donate $50 to Habitat for every Honeywell Home smart thermostat sold, up to $250,000. HGTV and iHeart Media are also partnering with Habitat to amplify key messages through social media, digital, print and radio.
As part of the campaign, Habitat for Humanity International is also partnering with Habitat for Humanity Detroit to hold several in-person, neighborhood revitalization projects in the Morningside neighborhood, where the local housing nonprofit has renovated or repaired more than 150 blighted homes over the past 15 years. At Home, Kum & Go, and Resideo employees are donating time to volunteer with Habitat Detroit on the Morningside neighborhood revitalization projects. And on Earth Day, April 22, Habitat will host a community block party to celebrate the completion of those projects, highlighting sustainability and community resilience.
Others can support the Home is the Key campaign by donating online and by purchasing select products that send a portion of the proceeds back to Habitat. Habitat encourages using #HomeIsTheKey on social media and visiting habitat.org/homeisthekey to learn more.
About Habitat for Humanity
Driven by the vision that everyone needs a decent place to live, Habitat for Humanity found its earliest inspirations as a grassroots movement on an interracial community farm in south Georgia. Since its founding in 1976, the Christian housing organization has grown to become a leading global nonprofit working in local communities across all 50 states in the U.S. and in more than 70 countries. Families and individuals in need of a hand up partner with Habitat for Humanity to build or improve a place they can call home. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage. Through financial support, volunteering or adding a voice to support affordable housing, everyone can help families achieve the strength, stability and self-reliance they need to build better lives for themselves. Through shelter, we empower. To learn more, visit habitat.org.