Sunday, October 2, 2011

September update

September has passed, and the Thrivent Builds home and the Trudy Heinecke home are getting closer to finished. The building exteriors are basically done, as is much of the interior work. There's still more painting, installing hardware, and some landscaping to do. Friday I worked with other volunteers installing door casing (trim), assembling the planters at each downspout that will catch and slowly release rainwater, and doing a variety of other tasks.

We're doing well with fundraising the Lutheran portion of the costs, but we need you and your church to come volunteer at the Kinsell Commons 81st Avenue site, as we're behind on the Lutheran and Thrivent members portion of the volunteer hours. The site is open for volunteers Wednesday through Saturday. To come out individually or with a small group, just sign up on the website. To bring a larger group, contact Habitat, either via the website or at 510-251-6304. Be sure to let them know you're a Lutheran and/or a Thrivent member -- they can probably get you in even if the site is "full".

Saturday, August 6, 2011

August update

Friday most people including Cia, the future homeowner, worked on painting. I was expecting to, but instead I was helping get ready for Grid Alternatives. Grid and their volunteers will be out next week to install the solar panels on the houses at Kinsell! And in the end, I did some painting, too. I painted the vent stacks on the roof to protect them from the elements.

Friday, July 15, 2011

meet the homeowner

Today at the work site I got a chance to meet and work with the future homeowner of the 2011 Thrivent Builds house. Her name is Cia, and when she completes her hours and gets her home, she'll be living with her mother, Delfina, and her granddaughter Bailey. If you run into her out the work site, introduce yourself and say hello!

Friday, June 3, 2011

rain, rain, go away!

The Thrivent Builds and Trudy Heinecke houses are pretty much weather-tight at this point. Which is a good thing, because there's lots of rain forecast for the next couple of days. (If you're not from California, it's unusual but not unheard of to have rain at this time of year.) Today they got some last bits of flashing tape installed, and a few folks got started on the siding. The other houses were getting their roofs finished, and some last windows and flashing tape.
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Saturday, May 21, 2011

May update

Hard to believe it's only been a month since the build-a-thon. With the great progress during the build-a-thon, and churches like RLC bringing lots of folks, the Thrivent Builds and Trudy Heinecke houses are looking good. In the picture you can see they're getting roofing and windows installed. They've already had some of the plumbing roughed-in.

You may notice the safety rail on the edge of the upper roof. That's allowing volunteers to more safely install the roofing. You may also notice the silver-colored bumps on the roof. Those are for the solar panels that will be installed, meaning the Habitat homeowner will have very low electric bills and their home will have a lighter impact.

Come out and volunteer at the Kinsell worksite. Or bring a group from your church.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Resurrection Lutheran build day

Big shout out to Resurrection Lutheran Church of Dublin, which sent out 15 people to work at the Kinsell worksite today. It was a big enough group that we were split up into different teams.

Some people did some painting, some put house wrap (aka Tyvek) on the houses, and some worked on the roof, putting finish plywood over the eaves, adding drip edge, rolling out tar paper, and installing brackets for safety railings. For me, I was volunteering on a different day of the week than my usual Friday, so not only did I get to spend time with the good folks of RLC, I got to see some of the regular volunteers I normally only see during the build-a-thon and other special events.

In any event, a lot got done today. Thank you, RLC!

Check out more pictures from the day here:
RLC work day

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

2011 Build-a-thon

From 2011 Build-a-thon
The 2011 Build-a-thon was a huge success. We had a great turnout all four days, and although a bit of rain on Monday dampened the construction site, it didn't dampen enthusiasm. Hundreds of volunteers, Lutheran and non-Lutheran alike, worked together to frame 7 houses for deserving families. All of the houses got their roof sheathing on, and most got additional blocking and nailing that's normally done after the build-a-thon. In short, we got the furthest along during any build-a-thon at Habitat East Bay.

This year, in addition to a house sponsored by Thrivent Builds, there's another special Lutheran house, sponsored by the Trudy Heinecke Trust. As the sign on the front of the house says:
In her lifetime, Trudy Heinecke was a leader and friend to Habitat East Bay. Her greatest dream was to leave the opportunity of homeownership to a deserving family. Find out how you can make a lasting legacy at

Both houses are part of an 8 home project in Tassafaronga Village in the Woodland neighborhood of Oakland, and are about 2 blocks from the 14 homes done in phase 1. It's due east of the Oakland Coliseum, and across the street from two schools and the new East Oakland public library.

A huge thank you to everyone who volunteered and donated to make the 2011 Build-a-thon a huge success. And a special shout-out to our Lutheran volunteers during the build-a-thon, from Zion Lutheran (Oakland/Piedmont), St. Paul Lutheran (Oakland), Resurrection Lutheran (Dublin) and Christ the King (Fremont).

From 2011 Build-a-thon
From 2011 Build-a-thon

For more photos, check out my 2011 Build-a-thon album, and the Habitat East Bay albums from day 1, day 2, day 3, and day 4.