ATTENTION VOLUNTEERS
Saturday, March 7, 2015
This weekend we are hosting a group from Berkshire Young Professionals at the Francis Ave rehab.

 If you have any questions, call Luke: (413) 446-7732 or Nicole: (585) 750-8981. See what else we're working on right now!

 
AND A BIG THANK YOU...
to the team at Tatro Flooring!
They have generously installed new flooring in the kitchen, bathroom and front hallway for a Homebuyer Partner family that lives on Orchard Street. Please call (413) 443-9363 if you would like more information on their sevices.

INTRODUCTION TO BERKSHIRE HABITAT
Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity is part of a global, nonprofit housing organization that builds homes, communities and hope.
Berkshire Habitat  is dedicated to eliminating substandard housing locally and worldwide through constructing, rehabilitating and preserving homes; by advocating for fair and just housing policies; and by providing training and access to resources to help families improve their shelter conditions.
Habitat for Humanity was founded on the conviction that every man, woman and child should have a simple, durable place to live in dignity and safety, and that decent shelter in decent communities should be a matter of conscience and action for all.
All that said, please understand that we do not give away homes. Our homebuyer partners must:
  • Go through a rigorous qualification and selection process.
  • Have a qualifying income and attend our Building for Tomorrow financial literacy training program.
  • Invest 400 (for a single person) or 500 (for dual heads of households) hours of sweat equity in the building of their own home as well as the homes of others. During sweat equity, homebuyer partners learn home maintenance and upkeep.
  • Pay their mortgage on time.
We do not give away homes. We help those who are just a little short of realizing the American Dream of Homeownership. It's a hand UP, not a hand OUT!

FREE TAX FILING

If your household income was $58,000 or less for 2014, you can file your taxes for free.
Click here to do it yourself online. 
No computer? Call our office at 413-442-3181 to make an appointment and use ours.

CDBG: Community Development

Block Grant

The city of Pittsfield wants to hear how you would like them to prioritize CDBG federal funds for the next 5 years. Types of eligible projects include street and sidewalk improvements and human service programs. The city wants to hear what your concerns, interests and priorities are! You can take an online survey here to let them know. 
 
Representatives from the city of Pittsfield will be at the March 9 meeting of the Morningside Initiative at 5:45 p.m. at Morningside Community School.
 
Let your voice be heard! 

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Looking for a Different Kind of Volunteer Opportunity?

Our one-on-one Coach Mentors say that working with the graduates of our Financial Tools & Budgeting classes who are going for BIG life goals has been rewarding beyond their wildest expectations.
Share your financial and life skills to help create a better life for a Pittsfield family by joining our awesome Building for Tomorrow Coach Mentoring Team!
We need your good listening and communication skills, compassion, sense of humor, and about 10 hours of your time each month. No financial expertise required.
Apply today for the next Coach Mentor Training Session on Saturday, January 24 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Pittsfield. Contact Lin Schreiber at 413.441.8286. 
BUILDING FOR TOMORROW
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Do you feel like you are drowning in debt? Are you ready to take charge of your financial future in just seven classes? If you have tried and failed at budgeting, this class is for you. Here are the rules:
Make every dollar work for you.
Save for a rainy day.
Roll with the punches.
Live on last month's income.
The rules make a lot of sense, and they are worth striving toward.
Our program will change your financial life. 
A new series of classes begins soon! 

To sign up, call or email Habitat at 413.441.8286
Building Dignity

Habitat builds homes with families that demonstrate a willingness to partner with us. These families invest hundreds of sweat equity hours and at the end of the day, the mortgage they pay helps fund the construction of more Habitat homes. It’s easy to feel good about that!

Building Relationships

Politics, professions, ethnicity, religion and economics all fall away at Habitat. We invite people to find common ground through shared goals and collaboration.

Building Community
Habitat seeks to end poverty housing by transforming whole communities, house by house, block by block, neighborhood by neighborhood. Our new Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative allows us to serve more families by expanding our offerings to include critical home repairs and rehabilitation programs.

Our homebuyer partners must go through a rigorous qualification and selection process. Our homebuyer partners must have earnings and attend financial literacy training that teaches them to maintain a budget. They must invest 400 or 500 hours (or about a year) of sweat equity in the building of their own home as well as the homes of others. During sweat equity they learn home maintenance and upkeep.

And guess what? After all that:

They still have to pay a monthly mortgage.