Meet Grayson

Meet Grayson 1200 799 habitatdetroit

Grayson Wilson, along with his mother, Anne migrated to the US from Guyana South America in search of a better life. They faced many challenges and setbacks as they learned a new culture and way of life but thrived, nonetheless. In his younger days, Grayson was extremely active in sports and loved being on a team. His love for teamwork, leadership, and connectedness lead Grayson to a successful 7-year career in the Army.

In 2022, Grayson connected with Habitat Detroit and joined the Weekend Warriors, knowing he very much wanted to be a homeowner himself.  Understanding he needed to get a few financial ducks in a row first, he began to attend webinars and continued learning everything he needed from this new community. Over the next year, he helped in several home builds and attended webinars all in order to gain the skills needed to be a successful homeowner. During this time he discovered that the Habitat Detroit culture at its core is “genuine care”.

“I have an innate desire to serve others and to see their lives fulfilled. Volunteering with Habitat Detroit for over a year and a half, I’ve seen other’s homeownership dreams come true. I’ve learned new skills relating to home renovation and home maintenance,” said Wilson.

In February 2023, his hard work had paid off — Grayson officially applied for and was approved to be a Habitat Detroit Homeowner. That same week he viewed a house and made his choice shortly after.
Wilson continued, “Now that homeownership is a reality for me, I am grateful to have this experience. Working with Habitat Detroit offers me peace – They continue to equip me with the knowledge, skills, and access to resources to make my homeownership lifecycle sustainable.”

Partnership Between Habitat for Humanity Detroit and Meridian Comes Naturally

Partnership Between Habitat for Humanity Detroit and Meridian Comes Naturally 1200 800 habitatdetroit

There’s a strong correlation between mental and physical health and having a decent and stable place to live. So then, it’s no wonder that a partnership between Habitat for Humanity Detroit and Meridian, an organization providing government-sponsored and managed care services to people of all ages, makes sense.

The two organizations are teaming up to form a new partnership with the goal of providing the people of the Detroit with more affordable, safe, reliable, and attainable housing options.

Meridian’s $52,000 investment and commitment to at least 11 volunteer days will help address immediate affordable housing needs in Detroit and provide long-term recovery and stability of displaced and marginalized communities. Meridian, a Michigan based provider of government sponsored health plans helping individuals and communities live healthier lives, one person at a time, has already supported the completion of one home this year and the rest planned into the beginning of 2024. The first home dedication was on Nov. 14, in time for the family to move in and get settled before the holidays.

“Meridian is proud to partner with Habitat Detroit to promote health equity and socioeconomic stability through housing by addressing gaps in the social care system,” said Meridian in Michigan’s Senior Vice President of Operations, Tara O’Neil, who serves on Habitat Detroit’s board of directors. “Research has shown access to safe, stable and affordable housing is a key social determinant of health, which can lead to improved physical and mental health and well-being in our communities.”

Habitat for Humanity Detroit not only works hard to provide new homes, they also make meaningful improvements and additions to existing homes. There’s also a strong emphasis on community education on financial and important homeownership topics, leading to more informed and successful homeowners.

By working together, the two organizations are able to serve the whole person and ensure families have the necessities and tools that support a long and healthy life.

Barton Malow Provides Hands-On Learning Experience While Helping Detroit Homeowners

Barton Malow Provides Hands-On Learning Experience While Helping Detroit Homeowners 1200 800 habitatdetroit

Thirty-five interns at Barton Malow recently gathered to lay new driveways, sidewalks, and a back porch for homeowners in Detroit. The company worked with Habitat for Humanity Detroit (HFHD) on the project and donated the materials and time to make the improvements happen.

The work took place at homes located on Maryland Ave. in Detroit. One home is an existing site that HFHD has been making improvements to recently. That home received a new driveway and front walk. Another project the interns tackled was at a newly built home by HFHD, which now has a driveway, front walk, and back porch landing. Barton Malow interns also aided with wall prep and siding installation at the homes.

The learning experience, which included hands-on training to lay concrete forms and pour concrete, is the latest in the partnership between HFHD and Barton Malow. The company made a generous donation to HFHD earlier this year to further support HFHD’s mission of providing affordable, safe, and quality homes in the City of Detroit.

Habitat for Humanity Detroit and National Guard Association of Michigan Joined Forces on Sept. 11 to Rehab Army Veteran’s Home

Habitat for Humanity Detroit and National Guard Association of Michigan Joined Forces on Sept. 11 to Rehab Army Veteran’s Home 1200 800 habitatdetroit

Patriot Day is a day of reflection and remembrance. It can also serve as a day to honor those who served our country. That’s what National Guard Association of Michigan and Habitat for Humanity Detroit did this Sept. 11.

The two organizations came together to perform critical home repairs for Army Veteran Kevin Vann. National Guard Association of Michigan funded the repairs and sent volunteers to complete the work alongside Habitat for Humanity Detroit. The repairs were to a home at 7415 Woodrow Wilson St. in Detroit.

“We’re grateful to have teamed up with National Guard Association of Michigan on 9/11 to repair this Veteran’s home,” said Stephanie Osterland, Habitat for Humanity Detroit’s Executive Director. “We were previously able to provide a roof replacement for Mr. Vann, and know that these home repairs made his home safer and more comfortable to live in.” 

Commitment to the country and Detroit runs deep in the Vann family. During basic training, Kevin Vann learned that his parents had been murdered. Despite this incredible tragedy, he returned to finish basic training after laying his parents to rest. He served in the Army at Fort Hood, TX, and after returned to Detroit to work for the city and later at Henry Ford Hospital. All three of his children are active duty military, with one each serving in the Army, Navy, and Air Force. 

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