Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Design Competition Winners

The Southern California Chapter of the Institute of Classical Architecture and Classical America (ICA & CA-SCC) and Habitat for Humanity of Greater L.A. (HFH GLA) are proud to share with you the winning designs of our first ever Affordable Housing Design Competition. 

The Winning Designs were announced a little over a week ago at the oh, so stylish Waterworks in West Hollywood. All of the designs proved that affordable housing can be stylish, sustainable and easily built by volunteers.

Designs included entries from architects, interior designers, landscape architects and more. Everything from craftsman to contemporary was represented. A guide book of the winning designs is being made for all Habitat for Humanity affiliates in Southern California to use in future construction.

And the winners are (insert drum roll here).......

Spanish Colonial & Best Overall Design Winner Cindy Grant Architecture, Inc. with Tierra Sol y Mar, Inc. and Brooke Gardner Interior Design

Craftsman William Hefner Architecture, Interiors and Landscape

Mid-Century Modern KAA Design Group, Inc. with Kaplan Gehring McCarroll Architectural Lighting

Contemporary William Hefner Architecture, Interiors and Landscape

English Colonial Revival Michael G Imber, Architects

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Briggs, Osborne & Martinez Home Dedication In City of Lynwood

My name is Alison Mullin and I work for Starfish-Pr, Habitat for Humanity of Greater L.A.'s (HFH GLA) P.R. company. Through my work at Starfish I have been working with HFH GLA for close to a year now and I have been to many events where I have pinched myself and thought is it really possible that there is an organization like this that brings so many good people together to do good for so many good families. But after every event including the Gala in October, the Gaxiola Family build day in December, Power Women, Power Tools in May, someone has said to me, "Nothing compares to a Home Dedication, where the families receive the keys to their new homes."

This past Saturday I went to my first Home Dedication and witnessed the Briggs, Martinez and Osborne families get the keys to their new homes in City of Lynwood. Now, I can truly understand the power of what HFH GLA does; they bring visible and palpable joy to people by working with them to build what should never be taken for granted - a home.

A home, especially in this city, is not something that is easy to come by. Especially when you are a single mother like April Briggs and DaJuan Osborne, or have a son with cerebral palsy like Guadalupe and Lorena Martinez.

At this Home Dedication, HFH GLA had someone close to the HFH GLA partner family introduce them to the audience and this gave so much insight into what great people these three families are. April's brother, a student at UCSB, talked about how his sister was his role model and provider (and a fine cook!) - often sacrificing her paycheck to buy him shoes and school supplies. DaJuan's grandmother talked about how DaJuan had dreamed of owning her own home by the age of 30 since she was a little girl and the Martinez family's pastor talked about how Lorena and Guadalupe would pray for a better place to live everyday.

You definitely had to be there to experience the literal joy of everyone that day, but hopefully these pictures will give you an idea. Just remember - truly happy people make beautiful pictures.

April Briggs & Family, Lorena & Guadalupe Martinez & Family

Lorena Martinez, April Briggs and DaJuan Osborne

April Briggs

DaJuan Osborne & Family

If you think this could be you, HFH GLA is currently accepting applications. Click here for more info.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Thank You to Some Very Special Kohl's Volunteers

Posted by Guest Blogger & Volunteer Clint Roy:

A group of dedicated A-team volunteers from Kohl’s #197 City of Industry & #590 Chino Hills traveled to HFH GLA’s warehouse office in Carson, CA to help out on preparing for their upcoming event, Power Women Power Tools. PWPT is a Hollywood charity event attended by various power women dedicated to giving back to their community.

As volunteers, we were assigned to set-up, stuff and package gift bags for the guests. The gift bags were filled with all types of products from Neutrogena, OPI, who manufactured a special shade of Pink just for the event named “Power Women Pink,” Disney & Warner Brothers DVD’s, Books, Sony merchandise, gift cards and other goodies. The gift bags are eco-friendly canvas totes (donated by Eco-Bags.) We set up an organized assembly line so every bag would have exactly the same quantity of merchandise. We were impressed by the brands and quality of the giveaways that were present.... we wanted to take some home ☺

Task number two was to clean and polish Pink hard hats and label them PWPT for the women volunteers to wear. For the sake of humor, a few of us volunteers decided to try them on, took some pictures and...Yeah!

We also name-tagged and labeled T-shirts by American Apparel. The shirts were different colors to differentiate team leaders, volunteers and crew leaders; shirts were also available in kids’ sizes for, well the kids...Being that there were celebrities attending, we saw some familiar names on the list such as Raven-Symone - a bit star struck but I kept it discreet☺. The shirts were boxed and organized so distributing them would be smooth during the event.

It was a pleasure working with Habitat for Humanity of Greater Los Angeles. Being around the architects, construction workers and other dedicated volunteers was such a gratifying experience. Their positive energy and enthusiasm gave us such motivation and drive to work, which at the end of the day paid off.

Among the Kohl's A-Team volunteers were:
Alexandria Lopez, Clint Roy, Christina Aguirre, Sangita Patel, Maritza Macias, Esther Crosley, Lillian Douglas.

Check out our photos from our volunteer day below!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Kyle Howard Shares his Habitat Experiences with CNN

Kyle Howard (My Boys) is a great friend and supporter, check him out on CNN Local Edition and please share it with your friends. Thanks, Kyle!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Soap Star Kate Linder Brings in the Heavy Equipment to Complete 3 New Homes

Did you see us in Soap Opera Weekly? We were thrilled to have soap star Kate Linder of Young & the Restless build with us during a special event with new partners' 1stCall Studio Equipment. (Check out our own Alison Treleaven on the right with 1stCall's Jon Hansen.)

How to Donate Goods to our Home Improvement Store

We get a lot of calls (thankfully) asking about how to donate goods to our Home Improvement Store so I thought I'd post that info here as a resource. We are in the process of opening a 2nd Store in Greater Los Angeles, so we will definitely need your donations. Also, we are happy to accept your old electronics for recycling, all you need to do is drop them off!
Donations Drop-offs
Donations are accepted at the Home Improvement Store during business hours (Tu-Sat from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.). Call (310) 323-4663 ext. 127 to check quality, age and usability of your items.

Donation Pick-ups
To contact us call (310) 323-4663 ext. 127 or email us at

We will contact you as soon as possible to discuss if we are able to accept your donation. We are unable to haul away trash, and some donations may be declined because of safety concerns, facility limitations, or marketability.

For the safest and most efficient collection of your donation, please follow these simple guidelines:

- Have all materials boxed (if applicable), stacked and readily accessible
- Mark all items with a note that reads "For Habitat for Humanity"
- Absolutely no hazardous materials or waste items are accepted
- As of February 20, 2009, we will no longer accept any children's items. These include cribs, strollers, car seats, toys and much more. Please refer to the following website for more information about the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act: We apologize for any inconvenience.
- We are unable to haul away trash or sort items from those that do not meet our criteria