Everyone deserves the safety and comfort of a place to call home. This simple sentiment is the underlying vision in which HomeAid was founded upon. Now celebrating over 30 years of impact, the leading national nonprofit provider of housing and resources has provided shelter for over 330,000 people in 13 states. We sat down with Carole Brady (pictured: below, center), Executive Director of HomeAid Houston, as she shares the ways in which HomeAid, their partners, and community volunteers continue to change the trajectory of homelessness across Texas.
How has HomeAid Houston’s core mission evolved?
“HomeAid’s mission is simple: to help those who are experiencing or are at risk of experiencing homelessness build new lives through community engagement and education. We’ve always stayed true to our core mission, however, over the years we’ve been able to expand our reach and impact through the strength and generosity of our local builders, trades and associate members of the Greater Houston Builders Association (GHBA).”
Can you share an experience that really drives home the impact the organization has had on the community?
“During my first month with HomeAid, I went to visit Boys and Girls Country to tour their campus. We toured one of the girls’ homes when one of the little girls, who had to have been about seven or so, asked if I’d like to see the best place in the house. She brought me upstairs and proudly showed me around her room. Later, I learned that the little girl had previously shared a bedroom with five others and had never had her own bed, much less a room to call her own before moving into the cottage. I can’t imagine what the impact of having your first room and bed must have felt like.”
What can we expect to see from HomeAid in the future?
“We’ve just added our newest program, HomeAid WORKS (Workforce Opportunities for Rebuilding through Knowledge and Skills). Through this program, we’re able to provide technical construction training, education and job opportunities in the homebuilding industry for men, women, youth and veterans experiencing homelessness. In Houston, we’ve partnered with Build Texas to provide these individuals with financial help in the form of transportation to and from school, equipment needed for work and employment opportunities for a better future.”
How can someone in Texas get involved with HomeAid?
“We’re always looking for non-builder partners to help complete our shelters with additional items like furniture or technology. Anyone looking to get involved in community outreach opportunities can always visit our website at homeaidhouston.org.”
The Art of Giving Back
As a socially-conscious homebuilder, Empire has been a proud supporter of HomeAid Houston, heading up the construction of an 8,100 sq.ft. cottage in Hockley for Boys and Girls Country as a builder captain in 2020. The cottage is a safe haven that provides security, warmth and a nurturing environment to eight boys who have come from families in crisis.
“We have important work to accomplish to change the trajectory of homelessness in our community and ensure we all have a place to call home,” says James Miller (pictured: above), Regional President at Empire Communities and 2021 HomeAid Houston Board President. “Growing up, my mother talked to us about breaking the cycle whether it was poverty, lack of education or racism. HomeAid provides an opportunity to break that cycle.”
It’s as important as ever to support the small businesses and organizations in your community. See how Empire Communities worked with local charity, Sleep in Heavenly Peace, to build beds for families in need.