Last year on New Year’s Day I jumped into Lake Ontario to help raise money for Habitat for Humanity Toronto. It was cold…ok, it was freezing…but it was also lots of fun and a great cause. And yes, that is snow you see!

My friend, and colleague at PWAC, Lauren Stewart, is raising money for Habitat for Humanity in conjunction with the University of Toronto. I hope you can help her out. Here is her note…

Hello friends and family,

Next week, on Saturday November 6th, I am joining a group build with other University of Toronto alumni and Habitat for Humanity Toronto to build a home for a family living in midtown Toronto, at St. Clair and Old Weston Road.

Habitat for Humanity Toronto is a homeownership program for hard-working families living in need of a decent, safe, and affordable home. In 2009, Habitat Toronto built 84 homes for local families and plans to build 100 in 2010. Habitat was founded on the remise that homeownership changes lives in many ways. When a family commits to partner with Habitat for Humanity, they put in 500 hours of volunteer work, and then must pay back an interest-free mortgage. Not only do families escape substandard housing that is overcrowded and unsafe, they are able to break the cycle of poverty and gain financial stability and dignity. Children grow up in safe neighbourhoods, knowing that they can accomplish their dreams.

Please help make these dreams come true by sponsoring me as I participate in the University of Toronto Campaign on behalf of all those families. To complement the actual build day next weekend and to thank Habitat for letting me participate, I am supporting the University of Toronto Campaign for Habitat for Humanity Toronto, in its effort to raise critical funds to cover the cost of one Habitat home to be built in Toronto for one local family. Collectively, the campaign goal is to raise $80,000 – the cost of one home through Habitat – and with your help we will reach this goal!

You can help support my efforts to raise funds for Habitat Toronto by making a secure online donation using your credit card. Please click on the link to access my personal giving page. Habitat issues Canadian tax receipts and you will get one instantly if you you donate online. If you’d like to make a donation using cash or cheque, I have a pledge form and I would be happy to collect your information. Contact Lauren at info (at) pwac (dot) ca

Thanks in advance for your generosity!

Best, Lauren

Did You Know…

* There are over 64,000 families on the waiting list for social housing in Toronto.
* One out of every three people in Toronto subsist below the poverty line. That means that in one of Canada’s most affluent cities, tens of thousands of hard working families are trapped in a vicious cycle of poverty.
* Habitat’s three ReStores ( cover all their administrative and fundraising costs? That means that 100% of your donation will go to building homes. Isn’t that fantastic?