1. Archive

Habitat: something to build on

Published Sep. 16, 2005

(ran CI edition)

Recently, I talked to Ann Albere from Habitat for Humanity of Citrus County. As you are probably aware, their organization is all-volunteer.

Habitat has provided simple, decent shelter to more than 100,000 family members (a number that is growing rapidly) throughout the United States. Hundreds of thousands of volunteers participate in various aspects of Habitat's work around the world.

Homeowner families have seen their lives transformed, becoming stronger members of society and making a difference in their communities. Neighborhoods have seen crime rates drop and businesses develop and grow as a result of Habitat homes built in their midst.

Two new homes are in the works for this fall in Citrus. If you volunteer, you don't have to leave home, sign up for an extended amount of time or learn new skills. They can use you as you are, where you live. If you would like to join these fine people, please write to them Habitat for Humanity, P.O. Box 1041, Crystal River, FL 34423, or call the Retired Senior and Volunteer Program.

Here are some jobs they need done: receiving and making phone calls, writing and typing reports, data entry, and opening and closing the office. They need an editor who would be responsible for their quarterly newsletter.

They need committee workers. Duties include: site selection (finding and arranging for building sites); family selection (screening, visiting and counseling homeowner applicants); family nurturing (counseling, helping and monitoring selected homeowners and prospective homeowners); building committee (coordinate details of construction and volunteer worker assignments); public relations (join the speakers bureau, write articles for newsletter, design and construct parade floats, special event booths and displays); finance committee (project annual budget, monitor cash flow, tax forms, etc.), and fund-raising (plan and organize fund-raising events).

The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) recruits and places volunteers 55 and older, with agencies throughout Citrus County who can use their skills and expertise. We serve as a clearinghouse for many agencies looking for volunteer help. The beauty of RSVP is that you get to choose the type of volunteer work, the agency to volunteer with and get free benefits through the RSVP grant by volunteering.

There are roughly 100 volunteer jobs available in the county through RSVP. If you want to join this group of lively, outgoing, friendly people, come see us. Call weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The office is in the Lecanto Government Complex. Our phone number is 746-7777. Please call before coming to make sure we (Don and Doris) are in to help you.

To volunteer:

Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP): 746-7777

_ Doris Mauricio works for the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program in Citrus County. You can write her c/o Seniority, the St. Petersburg Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731.