Local charities launch Giving Tuesday campaigns

Al Brown and Bud Barr move a dryer from a Habitat For Humanity moving truck to put it into the Restore. Brown and Barr volunteer with Habitat for Humanity every Tuesday.

Habitat for Humanity builds opportunities for the St. Joseph community.

“They helped people get houses and build their lives and build memories,” Emily Bowman said.

Bowman is getting a house from Habitat for Humanity. Bowman said she is looking forward to having more than a one-bedroom apartment for her sister and herself and being in a safer place.

“I would still be stuck in an apartment and in a not-so-very-safe neighborhood,” Bowman said.

Bowman must put in 400 hours of what Habitat for Humanity calls “sweat equity hours” to earn her home before she can move in, but she couldn’t have this opportunity by herself.

There are multiple people in the community who contributed to make her home a possibility: people who have donated money, volunteered or donated items for Habitat for Humanity’s Restore. These are all areas people can give back to the community this Giving Tuesday, a national day focused on giving in the midst of the busiest commercial time of the year.

Lanny Ellis values Habitat for Humanity’s mission and chooses to volunteer for the agency.

“It’s a good organization,” Ellis said. “When you help people get a hand up, which is what we do here, and yet they have to be part of it.”

Ellis is one of the three truck volunteers on Tuesday that collect and drop off donations from around the community for Habitat’s Restore.

“I think it’s a worthy cause,” volunteer Al Brown said. “We’re trying to help people. What we do is just one part of a whole lot of things, and we just try to do what we can.”

Other community charities have Giving Tuesday campaigns, and some businesses are trying to support them. Gordmans is matching every donation made to the St. Jude’s hospital online or in stores on Tuesday.

“If you go look at the history of St. Jude and where they donate, they don’t expect the patients to pay for anything: They pay for housing, they pay for the medical bills,” store manager Hoa Nguyen said.

Gordmans also sells teddy bears named “Bella” after a cancer patient at the children’s hospital and donates $2 for every bear sold.

Monica Dunn can be reached

at monica.dunn@newspressnow.com.