Monday, December 10, 2012

Building on Youth

Participate in our Building on Youth Program!

Youth ages 5-18 are welcome to participate!

What is the program?  Youth 5-18 can earn their Habitat for Humanity wristband by being involved in many aspects of the Habitat program.  It's a four part program that involves learning about Habitat, helping Habitat by doing at least two activities, reflecting on the activities through art and celebrating their accomplishment by sharing their art with the Northern Virginia community (we will post your art on our website and blog).  We will present each youth participant who completes the program with a Building on Youth wristband.

How can someone get started?  Each young person should discuss with an adult sponsor the activities they wish to perform. See below for a list of activities and ideas.  Email for more information or to get started!

What if I have a different idea of what to do?  Great!  Just discuss it with a Habitat staff member first.

Why did you start this program?  Habitat for Humanity is committed to involving youth in solving the important problem of poverty housing.  This program gives youth a more organized way to be involved and then, through our website and blog, celebrates their contribution.

Can the young person use this for community service for school or service clubs?  Absolutely!  The form has to be filled out and the hours must be verified by an adult sponsor.  

What's this about posting art on your website?  We plan to post the participants' art (paintings, drawings, stories, videos, etc) on our website and blog.  We will only identify the young person by their first name and last initial to protect their privacy.

Earn your Building on Youth wristband! 

1.) Learn--Choose 1 activity:
Attend a house dedication
Read Nickel and Dimed, On (Not) Getting By in America by Barbara Ehrenreich (for older teens)
Read one of the children's books produced by Habitat International: Grandpa's Hammer, Raising the Roof, Doorway to the World, Building Friends (for younger kids)
Visit to:
       Read a recent edition of Habitat World 
       Learn about how Habitat builds in other countries
       Check out their youth page for more educational activities
Talk with or recruit a volunteer and interview them
Visit the Global Village Center or Habitat Headquarters in Americus, GA
Visit to learn about surviving on a minimum wage income

2.) Act--choose 2 activities:
(if you choose any activities marked with a *, you must contact a Habitat staff member first!)
Volunteer at one of our ReStores
Interview a homeowner for an article on our website*
Provide and bring lunch or a snack to the build site*
Draw/create thank you cards for us to give to donors and volunteers
Visit a site and write a message to the homeowner on a stud that will go into the house
Construct a small project like bird houses, window boxes, etc to give to a homeowner
Help a homeowner clean their home before they move in*
Hold a bake sale to raise money for Habitat for Humanity of Northern Virginia
Make table decorations and signs for events
Create posters for Habitat events
Make announcements in your church when volunteers are needed
Decorate pots for house plants for Habitat homeowners
Challenge your group to collect change to help build a home
Create your dream house out of legos or other building blocks, then take a picture
Tell your neighbors, family and friends about Habitat for Humanity of Northern Virginia
Hold a fundraiser for Habitat for Humanity of Northern Virginia*

Reflect--choose 1 activity:
Tell us about the activities you chose through photography, painting, drawing a story/poem/essay, video, etc!  Tell us about your Habitat experience or what home means to you!  Be as creative as you wish!  We will display these on our website and blog!

Turn in your "I Did It!" form along with any artwork, stories or videos you created.  We'll add your contribution to our website and blog and send your Building on Youth wristband to you.  

For more information or to get started email Jessica Sweeney at


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