In 2018, I joined South Puget Sound Habitat for Humanity as the Executive Director. As part of my onboarding, I started by working with the board and staff to develop a strategic plan that included guiding principles. Through this process, we identified diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) as one of the guiding principles of our organization: “Habitat for Humanity welcomes people from all walks of life to partner with us as volunteers, donors, employees, and homebuyers. We celebrate and value diversity, welcome differences, and leverage the collective strengths of all people.”
American author and philanthropist MacKenzie Scott gifted $436 million in unrestricted giving to Habitat for Humanity International and 83 U.S. Habitat affiliate organizations, including four in the Pacific Northwest. The Washington State investment totals $15M and will impact communities in Clallam, Pierce, King, Kittitas and Thurston Counties.
Tumwater, WA: The Cowlitz Indian Tribe is partnering with South Puget Sound Habitat for Humanity to build 28 3- and 4- bedroom townhomes in Tumwater. As the Neighborhood Sponsor for this project, the Cowlitz Tribe made a $100,000 donation to the project. The community will be named Tâlícn, which means to help in the Lower Cowlitz Coast Salish language. These homes will be sold at an affordable price to first-time homebuyers, infrastructure work is set to begin in the spring of this year with homes beginning to be built later this fall.