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.
View an album of staff photos on Flickr. We’re proud of our professionals.
March 2017 Quarterly Staff Day
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.
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
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 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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
The 2016 Jazz Brunch, a benefit event combining music and buffet, takes place Sunday, September 25 from 11 AM until 2 PM at the Crow Valley Golf Club. Proceedings are enlivened by the auction of high-ticket offerings that will create lasting memories for those who win them. Herb Burns of Burns Auction Service returns again this year to conduct the proceedings. The Humility of Mary Developement Committee has announced this year’s prizes:
- Get away in the Quad Cities with one night’s lodging at the new Rhythm City Casino Resort along with two complementary dinners at Robert’s Buffet. Make your date and enjoy its sophisticated interior design, outstanding personal service and modern amenities. Let them envelope you in total luxury and comfort.
- Impress your guests with dinner for 8 at Hemispheres Bistro and experience new dining in the Quad Cities. Share a flavorful meal from Chef Aman Razdan’s modern and globally ethnic menu. Relish healthy, flavorful food choices that use fresh ingredients.
- Make memories in Titletown! This package entitles you to two tickets at the Green Bay Packers’ November 6, 2016 home game with the Indianapolis Colts. You’ll receive exclusive, private air transport from the Quad Cities. Make personal arrangements for an unforgettable weekend!
- Football and Holiday Shopping Week-end in Chicago ~ December 2 – 4, 2016. A great weekend getaway for two couples! Your package includes: A two bedroom condo in the West Loop with parking; two tickets to the Chicago Bears vs San Francisco game on December 4 and a $100 gift certificate to Girl and the Goat for tasty, bold flavored foods with global influence in a fun, lively setting.
- Enjoy your stay at a privately-owned, 2 bedroom/2 bath-room condo overlooking Lake Dillon in Colorado. Located less than five minutes to downtown Frisco and downtown Dillon, it sleeps six comfortably. Lying in the heart of Colorado ski country, it’s just 30 minutes to resorts at Breckenridge, Copper Mountain, Arapahoe Basin, Keystone and Vail. Hop on the bike trail right across the street! [Transportation to condo not included]
Tickets to the event are available by phoning the HMHI Office at 563/326-1330 and are $75. All proceeds benefit Quad Cities families that are experiencing homelessness. The HMHI program provides housing and support services that promote self-sufficiency.
With the help of our supporters, HMHI can provide assistance to struggling and grateful single parent families in need. While many are aware of the housing assistance we provide to families who have nowhere to live, many are unaware of the many supportive elements of assistance we offer. With the help of wrap-around assistance, it becomes possible for families to regain their footing and eventually exit our program once again self-sufficient and able to choose housing that they can afford.
This is a note of appreciation from one family who are grateful for all the support they are receiving:
“Humility of Mary Housing has been a godsend for my daughter and me. We are so thankful for the program.
There have been times when I couldn’t afford the copay for my medications, and HMHI helped me get them. The group meetings are very informative and have given me the opportunity to meet other program participants, who have become my friends.
They also have fun activities for our kids to do.
I feel like everyone who works for HMHI is like our family. They acknowledge our accomplishments.
I don’t know what I would have done or where my daughter and I would be living today if it were not for Humility of Mary Housing.” ~Tina
The semi-annual sale is upon us: the FALL Fresh Start Benefit Sale. Twice each year we open our warehouse to the public and allow them to access the beautiful merchandise supporters have donated to us. Although our families receive these items at no charge, the public is asked to contribute toward the support of the homeless families that we serve. But the prices help many families who appreciate the serviceable, gently-used and new items.
The Fall Fresh Start Sale is Friday and Saturday, September 23-24. While Friday hours are same as always–8 AM until 4 PM–the Saturday hours have changed to allow us to replenish the warehouse for the second day of the sale. Saturday’s sale hours are 9 AM until 3 PM.
The Fall Sale traditionally features seasonal supplies, including holiday items. It’s a great opportunity to shop for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas items, as you will find specialty items at extreme bargain prices. All the clothing will be seasonally appropriate, with deep discounts on our remaining summer clothing items.
Great prices from past sales continue for this upcoming Fall sale:
All children’s clothing: $.50 cents each
Tops, shirts, shorts, sweaters–$1, Pants, shirts, shoes–$2, Spring coats–$3, Winter coats–$4, Suits, Dresses–$3, Swimwear, P.J.’s–$1, Scarves, belts, ties–$1.
If you have items to contribute to the sale, bring them to our office at 3805 Mississippi Avenue in Davenport between 8 AM and 4 PM Monday through Fridays. We’ll be able to accept sale items until September 16.
We need lots of volunteers to make the sale run smoothly. Call Patti at 563/326-1330 to offer your services. We’ll find a job that you’ll enjoy. Our sale shoppers are delightful, and our families appreciate your support.
For daily updates about the sale (beginning September 6): visit our Sale Facebook Event page.
Help us publicize the sale. Download and post the Sale Flyer where people will see it. (Download one for your refrigerator so you remember to come, too!)
Find the sale on Craigslist of the Quad Cities. Share it with potential shoppers.
Bargain hunters, frugal shoppers, savers and supporters–we’ll see you at the Sale!