Charity seeks prize money to build homes for veterans
Published: Thursday, October 25, 2012
Updated: Thursday, October 25, 2012 22:10
A Houston organization that rebuilds homes is giving students the chance to finally use their Facebook account for good.
Rebuilding Together Houston is an organization founded in 1992 that aims to rehabilitate the homes of low-income, elderly, disabled and veteran homeowners. According to Director of Development and Communication for Rebuilding Together Houston Jennifer Touchet, the organization needs your vote to win the Home Depot Foundation’s Aprons in Action competition for October.
The competition awards $25,000 each month to the veteran-focused nonprofit that wins the most votes through a Facebook competition, according to the Aprons in Action website. As of Wednesday evening, Rebuilding Together Houston is in second place among four nonprofits for the month of October with approximately 3,500 votes, behind the Michigan Veteran’s Foundation’s 6,220.
Touchet said she hopes a big push to vote over the next week will help Rebuilding Together Houston win before the competition closes on Oct. 31.
“If we could get one big hit, I think we could win,” Touchet said. “Last month’s winner got 39,000 votes, and 15,000 of them came in the last weekend.”
According to Touchet, Rebuilding Together Houston, which operates on volunteer labor, could purchase materials for around 25 to 30 homes with the $25,000 prize.
Touchet also said winning would enter Rebuilding Together Houston into a larger competition, where the stakes are much higher.
“Each month’s winner gets entered into another competition in May where the grand prize is $250,000, second place gets $150,000 and third place gets $100,000,” Touchet said.
Touchet said Rebuilding Together Houston has had a long partnership with Home Depot.
“[Home Depot is] our community partner here in Houston,” Touchet said. “We have gotten materials from them for a while, and around a year and a half ago, local Home Depot employees began volunteering for us.”
Baker College sophomore Molly Jones said she agrees with the cause and that she has volunteered to help veterans before.
“I volunteered with an organization in my hometown that raised money to fly Veterans to Washington D.C. to see the World War II Memorial,” Jones said. “They go through a lot for us, and government assistance for veterans is actually pretty bad. For the mental and emotional stress they go through, they are sadly unrepresented.”
Touchet said this competition reinforces the importance of Rebuilding Together Houston’s cause, especially in the year of the organization’s 30th anniversary.
“We are helping keep homeowners in their homes,” Touchet said. “They love their homes and they want to stay in their homes, but they are financially and physically unable to keep up with their homes.”
To vote for Rebuilding Together Houston, visit apronsinaction.homedepotfoundation.org.