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Meet Our Staff!
“I was a new single mom (who) had never been accountable or had any responsibility before.” Mandi says, “If it wasn’t for Community Action Agency of Skagit County’s Job Connections Program and my placement at Skagit Habitat for Humanity; I probably wouldn’t be working I would have given up. They helped me believe I could do this; I have confidence in myself for the first time as an adult living life on life’s terms. I’ve learned to be ethical and responsible and independent.”
UPDATE: Mandi has since been hired as a permanent employee as cashier at Skagit Habitat for Humanity!
Jeff Anderson has been a volunteer at the Skagit Habitat for Humanity Store since August of 2013 and averages about 30 hours each week. Being involved with the Habitat Store has been a blessing to Jeff in many ways. Jeff has been disabled (due to epilepsy since he was younger, but he has always been an active person who loves to do landscaping, spend time outdoors and play with his grandson and family.
Jeff suffered a pretty serious stroke in October 2011 and the road to recovery has been a long one. His life came to a halt, his activities were all of a sudden limited and he had difficulty walking, speaking, and reading as well as holding simple things like a cup. In June of 2012, he moved from Idaho to live in Burlington with his daughter and her family. He was able to continue therapy and his quality of life improved some, but he was always looking for something more, a way to return to “normal”, he was depressed not living his former active life.
Now, Jeff gets to give back to the community with his volunteer hours and as a result of his time spent volunteering his speech, dexterity, social skills and motor skills have improved greatly. This is truly a blessing to Jeff and his family.
UPDATE: Jeff continues to volunteer at Skagit Habitat for Humanity and has become a key link for sorting and pricing donations before they can get to the sales floor!
Before I worked at the Skagit Habitat for Humanity Store I was unemployed, and without a high school diploma. I went through a program with WorkSource, where they paid me to learn what I needed to earn my GED. Part of the program was a paid internship for 12 weeks to get some work experience. I was given a list of options, and when I saw Habitat for Humanity, I thought, "That sounds like hard work!" Yet at the same time I figured it would be giving back to the community and making the world a better place.
When I first started working at Habitat I was working 20 hours a week, and going to school 20 hours a week. The first thing I realized was that I grossly underestimated how hard the work would be. I was constantly doing physical, active labor. I was always exhausted at the end of the day, my muscles hurt, and I started to think I had made the wrong choice in job placement. After a couple days however, things started to get easier, I got stronger, and I lost a little weight. The employees at Habitat all noticed how hard I worked and constantly commented on that, encouraging me at the same time. I started enjoying working there. Every day, I got a little stronger, I got better with customer service, and I built a strong work ethic. Once week 10 came around, I had my GED, and I was working 40 hours a week at Habitat. I started looking for other work on the side, because I knew that my internship would end soon.
By the time week 12 had passed, I still hadn't found a job. I asked for an extension on my internship and was granted another 2 weeks. By that time there were 4 full time employees on the sales floor, and most everyday they had to rely on extra volunteers to close on time. When my internship ended, I asked the Executive Director, Teresa Pugh about this staffing challenge and was hoping they'd hire me. Even though she agreed with me, there wasn’t enough funding to hire another employee; there was nothing she could do. I still hadn't found a job, so I started volunteering everyday full-time to help these over-worked employees. After about 5 weeks of volunteering, I got a seasonal job at Fred Meyer. I was happy I finally found a job, but at the same time I was worried about my co-workers at the Skagit Habitat Store.
Working at Skagit Habitat for Humanity taught me so much. It taught me proper customer service. It taught me how to work as part of a team, and it instilled in me a very good work ethic. I'm really happy I chose to work at Habitat. However, I still worry about the reliance on volunteers to meet their customers’ needs. I hope they can find funding to run their store with full efficiency, and continue to raise the money they need to build homes for low income families of Skagit County.
UPDATE: Michael has since been hired as a permanent employee as sales floor/warehouse at Skagit Habitat for Humanity!
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Progress on our current home!
We are currently working on a single-family home in La Conner for the Baer Family!
See more progress photos on our Facebook page here
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Habitat. We Build.
A world where everyone has a decent place to live.
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We are currently building in La Conner!
Go to VolunteerUp for
specifics and to sign up to work.
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for Humanity Store is
open for business Tuesday through
Saturday from 10 am to 6 pm, and donations are
only accepted during business
hours before 5:30 PM. The
Store address is
1022 Riverside Drive in Mount
on the link below
to find the location
of the store.
Map to location of the new Skagit Habitat for Humanity Store