Easter Egg Hunt Sparks Spring Smiles

Meadow (L) and her mother Hayley (R) worked together to find the hidden treats at the Easter Egg hunt activity. Other families are visible in the background–all involved in a flurry of action.

With the assistance of Saint Ambrose University students, our HMHI participating families sought out candy and eggs at an Easter Egg Hunt at our office grounds this spring.

The leadership of Hannah Oliver, the Community Service Chair of the National Society of Leadership and Success (NSLS) at Saint Ambrose set the event in motion. She organized the activities and reached out to St. Ambrose faculty, staff, clubs and organizations for support and donations. As a result, university students and personnel contributed many items and money to purchase supplies, prizes and Easter baskets filled with treats for the kids.

Organizing a hunt gave the children the chance to participate in the thrill of the search. Their parents enjoyed helping their kids find the treats, too. Four university students led the activities at this event, Hannah, Maggie, Yousef and Catlyn. See a photo of three of these four leaders in the photo array (below).

Participants enjoyed a lunch of pizza, cookies and drinks, donated by a caring local family, Celeste Dolan and her daughter Alanah (see photo array below for picture). Celeste has donated for this event for several years now. 

Children experiencing homelessness can experience their plight as a trauma. So, we are especially happy to provide positive activities for our program participants. This helps parents interact in healthy ways with their children and gives a healing boost to the kids, too. 

Click on the images to get a closer look at the day’s participants:

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EGG HUNT

 

Birdies for Charity: HMHI supporters can “chip in”

birdies for charity 2017 HMHI volunteers
Fourteen volunteers prepared 10 thousand Birdies pledge forms to send to HMHI supporters.

The John Deere Classic’s Birdies for Charity program officially opened its annual drive for 2017 this week. HMHI Birdies for Charity 2017 is a major source of donations at Humility of Mary Housing.

Birdies for charity HMHI pledge form 2017
Click the image to download and print HMHI’s Birdies for Charity pledge form.

Call our office at 563-326-1330 and we’ll send you a pledge card. Supporters can also download and print the Humility of Mary Housing official Birdies for Charity pledge card right HERE. Original downloads in color or black and white are acceptable (no photocopies). The form may be printed on single sides of paper (back-to-back printing is not necessary).

Last year, the John Deere Classic helped raise a record $10.5 million for charity, ranking it among the top four tournaments in charitable donations on the PGA Tour. Humility of Mary Housing typically receives over $20 thousand in donations through this program annually.

The Birdies program consists of individual charity pledges based on the number of birdies recorded in the tournament as well as lump sum donations to specific charities.

HMHI Birdies for Charity 2017 Helps the Quad Cities!

In addition, a Bonus Fund, boosts the charity take. It consists of tournament profits as well as a $325,000 matching donation from the John Deere Foundation. That increases the donation amount our agency receives. In addition, John Deere underwrites all administrative expenses for the Birdies program. Thus, 100 percent of every donation – plus the bonus – to go to us to help homeless families in the QCA.

As an incentive to attract charity donations, Lexus of the Quad Cities provides a free two-year lease of a 2017 Lexus NX to a donor who correctly guesses the exact number of birdies. This year’s John Deere Classic will be held July 10-16 at TPC Deere Run in Silvis. 

Birdies for Charity 2017

 

Micro Volunteer Week 2017 at Humility of Mary Housing, Inc.


The world commemorates Micro Volunteer Day each April 15. At HMHI, we make a good thing better: April 10-16 is Micro Volunteer Week! For mere minutes each day, you can volunteer from the comfort of your home to make life better for local families escaping homelessness. We’ll send you your “mission” by email. Anyone with an email address and Internet can participate!

April 10-16, 2017 Micro Volunteer Week

To learn more and register to participate, just click here. It’s so easy! Satisfying!

And we are grateful for your help…! We’ll have a little surprise for all our micro volunteers. And, we’ll thank you in our annual report. So, don’t delay…grab your opportunity to help the children in families who need their own bed. 

REGISTER TODAY!

micro volunteer week

 

Spring/Summer 2017 Volunteer Help Needed

spring/summer 2017 volunteer help
A group of volunteers from John Deere prepared this apartment for a family who didn’t have a home.
Over the next few months of Spring/Summer 2017, we will have several families graduating from our program. We are so happy for them! And we’re glad that we’ll be able to accept more families experiencing homelessness into our program. It gives them the opportunity to gather strength and escape life on the streets.
 
This means we will have apartments that we need to have cleaned and / or painted. We are looking for Spring/Summer 2017 volunteer help to make apartments fresh and clean for new families! It’s a satisfying task: to prepare a home for family that has nowhere to live.
 
All of these apartments are located in Davenport, Iowa. We are happy to work with family volunteer groups, church groups and civic organization groups, as well as groups from businesses, corporations  or educational institutions. We will do our best to accommodate your needs.
 
Please call Patti for information and to apply to become a Humility of Mary volunteer: 563-326-1330.

Training to Help Families in Crisis–March 2017 Staff Day

quarterly staff day March 2017
Professionals from the Quad Cities share their expertise with our staff, enhancing our ability to help our participating families.

Professionals from the local office of Legal Aid trained the staff this month during HMHI’s quarterly staff in-service day, March 8. They taught us how they can assist those who need legal assistance help, but don’t have funds to get that help. Now, equipped with this information, we can share this with our participating families. That kind of support is critical to those in need. Because, a legal crisis can devastate a family’s future.

We also received training that day on the differences that exist between people of differing nationalities and genders. Differences can lead to conflict, but they can also enrich. This training taught us how to most effectively deal with each other during crisis situations.  

At HMHI, our staff interact with volunteers from several generations. Another segment of our training day prepared us for what’s called “the new volunteerism.” During this presentation, we learned how to appreciate, respect and deal with different generations of volunteers. That also equips us to communicate more effectively with people of all age groups—whether they be volunteers, supporters or program participants.

quarterly staff day March 2017
Quarterly staff days give us the opportunity to collaborate on ways we can provide better service to local families experiencing homelessness.

View an album of staff photos on Flickr. We’re proud of our professionals.

March 2017 Quarterly Staff Day

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Spring Benefit Sale: April 28-29–Savings for you that helps needy families

Fresh Start Benefit Sale

The Fresh Start Spring Benefit Sale, a major fundraising effort at Humility of Mary Housing, is soon here. It’s scheduled to occur on Friday, April 28 from 8 AM to 4 PM and on Saturday, April 29 from 9 AM to 3 PM. The sale takes place in Gertrude’s Fresh Start Boutique, on HMHI’s headquarters property at 3805 Mississippi Avenue in Davenport. This bi-annual sale builds on a long and respected tradition, occurring each spring and fall. It offers gently used furniture, clothing and housewares to the public at extraordinary low prices. All sales proceeds assist families experiencing homelessness in the Quad Cities.

sale
Bargain seekers flock to the Fresh Start sales!

Workers and volunteers prepare year-round for the two benefit sales events. Supporters in the Quad Cities donate a myriad of useful items. These help the single-parent families served by HMHI get established in an apartment. Well-equipped families are better able to escape the perils of homelessness. HMHI families access donations, fee-free. Twice each year, the Fresh Start sales make items that our families are unable to use available to the public at very reasonable prices. All sales proceeds directly support the programs that strengthen HMHI families.

Spring Benefit Sale

Fresh Start flier
Click to view in full size. Download and print!

This time, the sale will feature new lighted displays. We’re using them to highlight some lovely collectible and special occasion glassware currently for sale. We’ll highlight on this post any special items that arrive and will be offered at this sale.

Another special addition to this year’s sale is a small display of artwork created by some of our program participants. Their creations are worthy of your attention and help the viewer realize that “homeless” is a label that may obscure perceptions of intelligence and talent. See the person–not the label–when you view the beauty they create.

Follow our event page on Facebook which we update daily. And, we post the sale on the Quad Cities CraigsList site (HERE is that listing). Help us help by spreading the word! Download and print our flier to post in your home or workplace [Click flier image on the right]. Share this post (copy and paste this link in your emails or social media: http://humilityofmaryhousing.com/hmhi/fresh-start-spring-benefit-sale )

Fresh Start Donations Still Welcome

We encourage you to remember us when you find no-longer-needed items as you spring clean closets, basements, attics and garages! We receive donations Monday through Friday, 8am to 4pm (no after-hours drop offs, please). Bring your items to 3805 Mississippi Ave in Davenport by April 21 so we can include them in the spring sale. We ask that all items be clean and in working order.

Many families enter our program with little more than the clothing they are wearing. So, we are happy to receive furniture, clothing, housewares and supplies that will help them stock their apartments with basics for everyday life.

Charming Charlie Holds Charity Night for HMHI on February 24

Charming Charlie
Charming Charlie will donate 10% of designated sales to HMHI on Friday, Feb. 24 between 5 PM-8PM.

Charming Charlie in Davenport supports families experiencing homelessness. They want to help by hosting a charity night for the families we help here at HMHI. On Friday, February 24, from 5 PM to 8 PM, Charming Charlie will donate 10% of designated sales to our cause. We hope you’ll take advantage of their generosity and use the opportunity to enjoy their colorful shop, full of jewelry, handbags, apparel, and gifts. Charming Charlie Charity Night for HMHI adds another reason to say “TGIF” this Friday.

When you enter the store, located in Elmore Marketplace at 2419 Elmore Avenue [MAP], let them know that you’re shopping with our families in mind. They’ll give you a wristband that indicates at checkout that all your purchases will assist local homeless families.

Charming Charlie Charity Night Options

There is an amazing variety of colorful merchandise to browse at Charming Charlie. Wander among the totes, satchels, crossbody and shoulder bags, evening bags, clutches wallets, and wristlets. Browse keychains, glassware, home and kitchen, fragrance and beauty items, travel accessories. Delight in admiring all kinds of jewelry. Charming Charlie can also direct you to organization products, stationery, tech accessories, keychains, gift bags and boxes. That’s just the tip of the iceberg!

If you haven’t yet visited this great retail space, take advantage of this special shopping opportunity to explore Charming Charlie–just one story in the 40,000 feet of merchandise in Elmore Marketplace. In addition, you’ll find other stores there: DSW Shoes, Gap Factory Store, Banana Republic Factory Store, Charming Charlie, Carter’s, Lane Bryant, Pier 1 Imports, Beauty Brands (south of Holiday Inn and Suites), with Mattress Firm, Loft and Fleet Feet on the west side of the lot along Elmore Avenue.

Gather some friends. Make an evening of it. And, you can all feel good that your designated purchases at Charming Charlie will help less fortunate families.

 

New “Rent It Forward” Program Offers Opportunity to Local Family in Need

HMHI family
With assistance, this family is succeeding. They’re our first to participate in the new “Rent It Forward” program.

by Sandy Dimmer

Just under two years ago, Hayley and her three children’s lives were much different than today. At that time, Hayley and her children were displaced from their home due to an abusive relationship. Life was very difficult and stressful for each of them, but obtaining an apartment through HMHI gave this family a much appreciated fresh start.

“My life before HMHI was rough. I had no choice but to be dependent on other people to help me house my children. This kept me in a very unhealthy and unhappy relationship that affected and controlled every part of my life and my children’s lives.”

Hayley used her time in transitional housing to work hard and stabilize her family. She was employed for 18 of the 19 months she was in the program.

“Being given the opportunity to start fresh and on my own was the starting point in my new, and much better life. I felt free and structured all at once. Seeing my kids so happy in our new home gave me the strength to change as many other aspects of my life that I could. I am very grateful for the help I received and continue to receive and for the resources I never would have found without all the wonderful people I’ve met at HMHI.”

Rent It Forward Program

In October, Hayley’s family began a new chapter in their lives. They became one of the first families in HMHI’s newest program, “Rent It Forward.” Due to reduced grant funding this year, HMHI was faced with some difficult decisions. In an effort to continue the important work that we do serving single parent families experiencing homelessness in our community, the decision was made to turn six of our apartments into “Rent It Forward” units to partially fund the cost of a slightly smaller transitional housing program.

Rent amounts are not based on income for this program, but are a flat rate on the lower end of fair market rent. Priority is given to rent to HMHI participants who have successfully completed the program and have a stable income, but are still finding it difficult to find housing in the community and wish to continue renting from HMHI. This program still offers support, but is less structured and provides less intensive services than other programs offered through HMHI.

Hayley was happy to become a part of this program. She had been looking at other housing options in the area and thought that this was a good opportunity for her family. By renting through this program, Hayley could provide safe, affordable housing for her children while also giving back to the program that helped her during her time of need. She is proud of what she has accomplished and is happy to be able to help the families who will need our support in the future. “I am very happy for the chance to continue renting our home while also helping families just like us. Giving back is such a great feeling. I would like to thank everyone who has made this possible for my family.”

Recently, Hayley has had another positive change in her life as she has obtained her “dream job.” Hayley has always been a very talented artist and has occasionally sold her artwork to supplement her regular income. She has now, however, obtained employment with a graphic design company. Hayley stated that she loves her job so much that it doesn’t even feel like work!

These are thumbnails of some of Hayley’s art pieces.  Her art pieces can be viewed and purchased at the HMHI office through April 1.

Spring Fresh Start Benefit Sale Improvements and Preparations

shelf
Volunteer-created shelf will feature glassware at the next Fresh Start Sale.

 

lighting
Special lighting will enhance shoppers’ experience at the Fresh Start Sale.

Our team in the warehouse is already busy. Spring Fresh Start Benefit Sale preparations are underway. We’re also making sale improvements to enhance your shopping experience. The Spring Sale is scheduled for Friday, April 28 from 8 AM to 4 PM and Saturday, April 29 from 9 AM to 3 PM!

One really creative HMHI volunteer built backboards that we will be using for our diningware and glassware displays. And, we’ve added lighting! This is just one of the many sale improvements coming your way in the Spring Fresh Start Sale. As you’d expect, it will occur at Gertrude’s Fresh Start Boutique in our offices at 3805 Mississippi Avenue in Davenport.

Donations Accepted

Throughout the year we collect donations of clothing, furniture and household items for our families experiencing homelessness and struggling to escape its grip. Donations not utilized by our families go into the Benefit Sale. All proceeds from this sale support the program that provides support and education to our participant families.

Please remember us as you begin spring cleaning in closets, basements, attics and garages! We are open to receive donations Monday through Friday, 8am to 4pm.

Catholic Schools Cover Our Babes with Diapers

As a part of Catholic Schools Week 2017, the Davenport Catholic Schools conducted a diaper drive, collecting donations for local children in need. They blessed Humility of Mary Housing, Inc. with a very generous donation of diapers and wipes. These products will support the local families experiencing homelessness that our program serves.

diaper delivery
Assumption High School students delivered pallets of diapers to us last week.

The local Catholic schools raised approximately 20,000 diapers and 40,000 wipes by soliciting donations from the classes in local schools: St. Paul the Apostle School, John F Kennedy School, Lourdes Catholic School in Bettendorf, All Saints Catholic School and Assumption High School. In addition to donating to Humility of Mary Housing, they also donated the diapers and wipes to Bethany for Children and Families and to Women’s Choice Center of the Quad Cities.

The students participated in various contests among the classes to incentivize the collection process. Mike Frieden, Director of Student Success and Student Council Advisor at Assumption High School, was grateful for their engagement in the project.

“Communities of Service”

The theme for the National Catholic Schools Week 2017, January 29 to February 4, was “Catholic Schools: Communities of Faith, Knowledge and Service.” Students delivered four pallets of diapers and wipes to us at Humility of Mary. We are extremely grateful. Our families will value this service. These products will give our families extra support in a useful and practical way.