In Lubbock, Texas, Covenant Health caregivers recently teamed up with Habitat for Humanity for a Blitz Build, during which the organization brings together community volunteers to build multiple homes in a short period of time. For the Blitz Build in early September, Habitat and their team of hardworking volunteers completed the exterior work for 3 homes in just 13 days, with the interior and other finish work scheduled for completion by December.
Living the mission
For Community Health Investment (CHI) Regional Director Tavia Hatfield, these volunteer opportunities are a way to continue the legacy of service started by the Sisters of Providence and Sisters of St Joseph. “Doing this kind of outreach is how the Sisters started – going into the community to serve,” said Hatfield. “It’s an honor for my team and our caregivers to get to live that legacy.”
Addressing homelessness and housing instability is a top priority for Covenant Health in the greater Lubbock area and beyond; increasing the supply of safe, affordable, stable housing and permanent supportive housing was one of the top priorities established by the most recent Community Health Needs Assessment, which is performed every three years as a collaboration of key stakeholders including CHI professionals, community members, and hospital representatives. By partnering with Habitat for Humanity, the CHI team created an opportunity to work with an established nonprofit to build homes for community members in need. During this phase of the build, over 40 Covenant caregivers donated their time and helped with installing windows and siding, painting, yard landscaping, and more.
Covenant caregivers and employees step up
Though Providence and Covenant Health have significant long-term strategies and investments occurring with nonprofits to address homelessness and housing instability in this region, this gave a chance for caregivers that don’t typically get to see this kind of community work in action to be involved in a more hands on way. “We’ve been through a pandemic for the last 18+ months and this provided time for our clinical caregivers to do something different, something as a team, something that contributes to someone else outside of the normal hospital setting,” said Veronica Soto, Community Health Investment Manager. “It’s great to work with an organization like Habitat for Humanity to build homes and then hear later how that home has changed someone’s life.”
Over the past 34 years, Lubbock Habitat for Humanity has built and remodeled over 150 homes in that region. In addition to providing new homes to families and individuals, Habitat also provides financial education and social services to support these families and address the social determinants that impact their ability to maintain a stable, safe residence.
“Covenant employees came out in full force! We literally could not have had the success we did with the Blitz Build without Covenant,” said Executive Director Christy Reeves of Habitat for Humanity. “Despite the pandemic and all of the challenges facing healthcare systems and employees right now, they still went the extra mile for Lubbock Habitat, and it truly made a tremendous difference.”
The next step for these homes will be the completion of the interior work and Covenant caregivers have already committed to participating again to ensure these homes are ready for their new owners. “Three incredible young women are still in awe of the fact they are going to be homeowners and be able to build equity and experience stability on a new level. The Habitat experience is transformative for these homeowners and their families, as they see companies, organizations, churches, and individuals, giving up their time just to help make their dream of homeownership a reality. That love and compassion and sense of community brings hope and inspiration which can truly change lives for the better,” said Reeves.
For more information on how Providence and Covenant are investing in your community, please visit the Annual Report to Our Communities.
To learn more about Lubbock Habitat for Humanity, please visit their website.