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Motivational Mondays : Habitat for Hope

Habitat for Hope A Place Where Hope is Growing
More than just motivation, the ministry of Habitat for Hope is inspiration for me in seeing the extent of love and dedication a small group of people can share with other people without expecting absolutely nothing in return.

I was introduced to Habitat for Hope through one of the full-time volunteers Tucker, long after we worked together on previous architecture and planning projects. It was a wonder to catch up with him and hear him describe the work he was presently involved with. It was particularly amazing to hear him describe his position at Habitat for Hope as a missionary serving God right here in Memphis with his talents in design. I never mentioned this to him but when I wanted to give up on architecture school, I wanted to become a missionary in some third world country; but as I continued on to be a part of Rural Studio building homes for the poor in Alabama, I did begin to understand that you can be a missionary wherever you may be with the talents you can offer.

{Above from left: 1. Mark Horrocks with one of the HFH kids. 2. A neighbor takes the kids on a hayride. 3. A dad on one of the 4 wheelers provided for roaming the landscape.}

Tucker best described Habitat for Hope in describing the people they served. Imagine, suddenly finding out your child has been diagnosed with a terminal illness and you must transplant to a new city to receive treatment. Not knowing how much time the treatment may take, not knowing how much it will cost, not knowing how you can pay for it, and not knowing anyone in this city. All these unknowns causing more stress in a traumatic time were things the founders of Habitat for Hope were very familiar with and worked to provide a support system in relieving. In essence, they sought to become a second family to them.

{HFH staff, volunteers, and a few of the families they serve attending a Memphis Redbirds game.}

{Horseback riding is a kind of therapy for children with life threatening illness. The metal barn affectionately called “Romper Room” houses an indoor playground, basketball court, train table, foosball, bikes, scooters, and ride-on toys.}

{The Horrocks pictured above from left ~ Mark, Mylissa, Bella, Izaiah and Samuel}

HFH’s founders Mark and Mylissa Horrocks helped their daughter Bella battle cancer about 7 years ago and in winning their battle have made the mission they created in HFH their life’s work. Through the Barnhart family, the Horrocks have a secured a 48-acre property in Shelby Forest that provides free housing to displaced families. It is also a retreat for the parents and kids to find “fellowship and spiritual renewal, and just plain fun.”

{The main house where the Horrocks family resides while providing temporary housing on the top floor (short-term) and in the downstairs fully-furnished apartment (long-term). }

{Rendering of cabins by Phil Hamilton. End product of LRK leading HFH through a visioning process.}

What is most interesting and impressive to me about Habitat for Hope as a designer is the vision they have for establishing a true retreat for these families and their sick children. With the volunteer involvement of architects, planners, and designers, they hope to build a main “lodge” facility and a community of 8 three bedroom cabins using smart and thoughtful design. For instance, the new structures will seek LEED {Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design} certification and the site design will also involve a sustainable site initiative. The design will also involve thought in biophilia, which understands that nature incorporated in a living environment can be a healing environment, promoting physical and emotional health. With these upcoming projects, there is never enough help you can provide either by sharing this story or thinking of ways you can volunteer your time and talents. Read more about HFH here.

How You Can Help
~To donate online click here. To send a donation, see the mailing address below.
~To become a volunteer you can fill out the form here and email to Mylissa at mylissa@habitatforhope.org.

Habitat for Hope
2041 Locke Cuba Rd
Millington, TN 38053
Ph +1.866.443.HOPE
For more info, email Mark.

Photos and images courtesy of Habitat for Hope.

Special thanks to Tucker and Habitat for Hope. I am amazed with your work and look forward to seing how far it will go. Also, I am currently designing some marketing material and an event logo for them that I hope to post soon. Stay tuned.

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