Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Welcome to new Exec Board Member: Lindsey Vansparrentak, Social & Training Chair

Lindsey Vansparrentak
Social & Training Chair
Year: Junior
Major: Hospitality Management
Minor(s): Business Management & Marketing

How many years have you been involved in Habitat For Humanity?
Two Years

What is your favorite memory with Habitat For Humanity?
My favorite memory was everything fro last year's spring break trip!

Why do you love Habitat For Humanity?
I love Habitat because people come together on campus who do not necessarily work together in any other aspect and in the course of one week we build a house and completely change someone's life. It is amazing stuff!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Spring Break 2011 Documentary

As a first-timer on Habitat For Humanity's Spring Break trip and broadcast communications major, Ashliegh Jarzenski combined her passion for service with Habitat and film during our 2011 trip. Jarzenski had a camera with her at all times during the trip and created a mini-documentary. Check out the video she made for the AU Habitat team below!

<iframe width="480" height="390" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/AIFbsfJeq5s" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Habitat for Humanity crews wrap up week of building homes

By Allison Kennedy
Posted on Saturday, March 12, 2011

The final morning of the first Collegiate Challenge week sponsored by Columbus Area Habitat for Humanity found students hard at work on six houses in south Columbus.

The students represented Columbus State University and five other schools, including the University of Pittsburgh, Illinois State University, Ashland University in Ohio, Sacred Heart University in Connecticut, and the Ethel Walker School, a girls boarding school also in Connecticut.

“Columbus is a different (Habitat) trip because we get to put up a whole house in a week,” said Bethany Fritzinger, a 20-year-old sophomore from Sacred Heart.  This was her second trip here.  Local developer Brooks Yancey, the construction manager of the Sacred Heart house, was hosting a cookout for the students Friday night.

“He laughs at us every day,” Fritzinger said.

Sacred Heart student Jane Hanna, 20, was on her first Habitat trip and it was her first time to Columbus.

“I loved it.  This is the greatest time I’ve had in my entire life,” Hanna said.  “I found it so amazing.  I didn’t know any of the students before I signed up and I’ll be walking away with new friends.”

She said her family moved to Carmel, N.Y., from the Bronx when she was 5.  They went from an apartment to a house and she talked Friday about the importance of having a place to call home.

“I know what that’s like,” she said.

The youngest crew came from the Ethel Walker School.  Kayla Monroe and Dele Odumosu, both 16, were on their first trip.  Both want to come back.

“It’s amazing how much you can do in a week,” Kayla said.  “We’ve learned some cool new things.”

“A lot of teamwork,” added Dele.  “You can’t make it without a team.”

The students had only one raid day: Wednesday.  That’s when they toured local museums.

On Thursday night they had a talent show.

Briana Williams, a 19-year-old freshman at Ashland University, took first prize with a Tai Kwon Do demonstration.  She broke four boards with her foot.

“It’s a great experience to be able to bless other people,” Williams said of the Habitat work.

A second week of Collegiate Challenge kicks off Monday both in Columbus and in Russell County.

Allison Kennedy, 706-576-6237


©2011 Ledger-Enquirer and wire service sources.  All Rights Reserved.


Habitat for Humanity Collegiate Challenge: Spring breakers coming to build houses

By Allison Kennedy
Posted on Monday, March 7, 2011

While a lot of college students are catching rays at the beach this week, about 170 from six U.S. schools will help construct six houses for Columbus Area Habitat for Humanity’s Collegiate Challenge.  It’s today through Friday.

An additional 45 students from two schools will come next week, the same week Russell County has its Habitat collegiate build.

“I think we’re going to make a significant change—what a difference this can make in the neighborhood,” said Columbus Habitat director Brinkley Pound, who will experience her first Collegiate Challenge.  She was hired earlier this year.

“The cooperation has been unbelievable.”

The local affiliate’s first female director, she’s been given a pink hard hat.

Students are coming from Ashland University in Ohio; the University of Pittsburgh; Illinois State University; Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Conn.; The Ethel Walker School, a boarding school for girls in Simsbury, Conn.; and Columbus State University.

The following week, students from Washington College in Chestertown, Md., and Ithaca College in New York will be in town.  They’ll help build one house, as well as finish work on the other six.  NeighborWorks is a partner with Habitat the second week.

The six sites for next week’s build are all on Bragg Smith Street, off Cusseta Road.

While here, the students will stay in local schools and churches.  Highlights of the week include a Shrove Tuesday, on Fat Tuesday, dinner at Trinity Episcopal Church; a dinner and talent show Thursday at St. Luke United Methodist Church; and today, right before lunch, runner Ed Roshitsh will speak to the group.  He’s running across the country.

The build closes out with a lunch cookout Friday with members of the local board hosting.

University of Pittsburgh sophomore Sascha Steinberg is making her second trip here.  She’s the group leader of her 25-member crew.  Their 14-hour drive started Saturday.

“We love the atmosphere and we like working with the construction (crews),” Steinberg said.

This year marks the 18th Collegiate Challenge in Columbus.  Pound emphasized “servant leadership” as the main reason students give of their time year after year.

“You give without an expectation of return,” she said.  “It’s the pure definition of what they’re doing.”

Habitat does not charge interest for its home mortgages.  Qualified homeowners contribute 500 “sweat equity” hours of which they help on the various sites.  Many future homeowners will be on the builds this week and next.  It costs about $65,000 to build each house, Pound said.

Both Pound and Lamar Powers, a former board member at Russell County Habitat, said donations are still needed for their respective projects.

“With the economy still bad, it’s been very tough,” Powers said.  Four Habitat houses will go up in Russell County, in Sandfort Hills.

Allison Kennedy, 706-576-6237


©2011 Ledger-Enquirer and wire service sources.  All Rights Reserved.


Habitat houses go up as temperatures go down

By Allison Kennedy
Posted on Tuesday, March 8, 2011

You know what they say about the weather in these parts:  If you don’t like it, hang around a few days.

Columbus’ 75-degree temperatures last week gave way to 45 degrees Monday, as the weekend rain brought in a cold front.

But to most of the young people here for the Habitat for Humanity Collegiate Challenge, Monday was downright balmy.

“This is beach weather,” said Kelly Leather, a 21-year-old senior from Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Conn.

Monday marked the first day of the annual build.  Six houses are going up on Bragg Smith Street, off Cusseta Road.  Five colleges and one girls’ boarding schools re represented here, totaling 167 students.  They’re staying in local schools and churches.  They’ll leave Friday.
Next Monday will bring 44 students from two other colleges for a second week of building.

This is how the students are spending their spring break.

Brinkley Pound, the newly hired director for Columbus Area Habitat, is experiencing her first Collegiate Challenge in charge.  She said the students were eager to get to work Monday.

“It was hard for me to keep them from going to the site this morning,” Pound said, as the sound of hammers rang through the narrow street.

The day began with a devotional led by Evelyn “Mimi” Woodson, Columbus City Councilor from District 7.  Then the students dispersed to the six sites.  The walls went up Monday morning.

The Ethel Walker School in Simsbury, Conn., sent 18 people.  One of them, 17-year-old Sara Kamillatos, wore shorts.  She said another student had a tear in her pants and she gave up her sweats.

Local builder Tom Moore was overseeing the work on a house being built by the University of Pittsburgh and Columbus State.  It’s his fourth year working with the Pitt students, and they’ve built up a camaraderie.  “When I was this age, I wouldn’t have done this,” said Moore, who graduated from Georgia Southwestern University in Americus.

Pitt senior Lauren Goroff, 21, is here for her fourth spring break.  As the Red Hot Chili Peppers blared from a CD player, Goroff smiled as she reported the weather from Cleveland, her hometown.

“it’s snowing there,” she said.

Columbus resident Mae Buler wants to own her own Habitat home and was putting in some volunteer hours on the site Monday.  She has lived in public housing for 34 years. 

“It’ll be exciting to have my own home,” she said.  “I can decorate.  I can have ownership.”

This is the 18th year of the local college build.

Aspiring homeowners must put in 500 total “sweat equity” hours on Habitat sites.  If they qualify, there’s no interest figured into the mortgage.

Bragg Smith Street is named for former Columbus resident Bragg Smith.  He died Sept. 30, 1903, at age 32, when he tried to rescue the city’s engineering and public services director, Robert L. Johnson.  Johnson was inspecting a ditch on 11th Street when it caved in and buried him.  Smith, now buried in Porterdale Cemetery, was honored with a marker shaft on his grave, as well as an historic marker.  Pound said the marker is missing from its pole and aims to get it replaced.

In addition to CSU, Pitt, Ethel Walker and Sacred Heart, the other schools here this week are:  Ashland University in Ohio and Illinois Sate.  Next week will bring students from Washington College in Chestertown, Md., and Ithaca College in New York.

Allison Kennedy, 706-576-6237


©2011 Ledger-Enquirer and wire service sources.  All Rights Reserved.


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The Habitat Experience

Lindsey, Ashley, and Tracy representing their sorority, Alpha Delta Pi, after taking cover from the rainstorn

This was my first trip with Habitat for Humanity.I absolutely loved every single second of the Habitat trip this year! There were some ups and downs, but the second the pieces of wood started resembling a house, I knew that every second was worth it. This Spring Break was well worth all the effort. I had thought about going on the typical Spring Break next year, but there is no way I could pass up the opportunity to help others in such a tremendous way. On top of everything, I meet some really awesome people. both faculty and students, and have definitely created memories that will last a life time. - Lindsey Van Sparrentak

Representing the Alpha Phi Sorority
Carolyn, Ashliegh, Rachel, Jalessa, Maureen, and Karie

 I love this trip! It is nice to get away from school and everything else, but its awesome to know that you are helping change someone's future. Habitat means someone's life is changing for the better. We are able to help others who need it. I feel like a good Samaritan and hopefully in the long run, we will encourage the future home owners do the same. -Maureen Heacock

Beth, Brie W., and Kelly Ann working hard

Before we left I was waiting to get super stoked and pumped but I never did until we showed up the first day and I was told to build door frames with Kelly Ann and Brie. Once i pounded in the first hammer it just felt so good to know that what i was doing was actually going to be used in this house that we were building. Then when i saw the first door frame go up I was beaming. I just kept thinking "No way. Did I really help build that?" It was so cool. I loved going on this trip and seeing so many houses being built in places that didnt have anything there to begin with was amazing. Going on this spring break trip was an experience I will never forget. Habitat for Humanity means lending a hand when someone heads help back on their feet. That sounds so corny buts its so true. People dont ask for help often but when they do, as human beings, we should be there asking what we can do. It's common knowledge you help someone who needs help; therefore, Habitat For Humanity seems like common knowledge to me. -Beth Rosepal

PJ, Ashliegh, and Maureen at the Marti Gras Dinner

While on the spring break trip I felt so blessed to be a part of such a wonderful organization such as Habitat For Humanity. I was the first person on the waitlist for the trip back in the fall, so being able to go to Georgia, meet the people I've met, and help the Columbus, Georgia area rebuild its community was such a blessing. I love Habitat For Humanity because of it's ability to inspire hope. Habitat inspires hope not only in it's homeowners, but in its hardworking volunteers, also. It helps one realize that there are other people out there helping to better our communities and change the world in a positive way, one house at a time. - Ashliegh Jarzenski

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Spring Local Builds!

We have two local builds coming up soon and we invite YOU to come out and help build a house in the community!

Local Build Dates:

Saturday, March 26th
Saturday, April 9th

Meet outside the mailroom at 8:30 A.M. come dressed appropriately!

Hope you can make it!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Sausage Biscuits and Cracker Barrel

Before we begin this post we would like to apologize for our lack of communication during the spring break trip. When we arrived at St. Luke's, the church we were staying at, we found out that we wouldn't have access to wifi...therefore, the lack of blog posts.

Now that we're back on campus we can now give you a rundown of the Habitat For Humanity Spring Break Trip 2011! (Get excited!)

Monday, March 7th

Wake-up call comes before the sun is up at 6 am and we scramble to our white 15- passenger vans. After arriving on site, we eat our first of many sausage biscuit sandwiches and are greeted by Brinkley Pound, the director of the Columbus Habitat for Humanity chapter, a City Council woman, and a multitude of Habitater's from schools across the country. After breakfast we meet our contractors and get to work on the cold, concrete slabs were supposed to resemble houses by the weeks end. By the end of the day, we had four walls, rooms, and were starting on the roof.

After Day One

Tuesday, March 8th

We were fortunate to have absolutely beautiful weather on Tuesday; however, we all became red lobsters due to the wonderful gift of sunburns from the Georgia sun. The roof went up on one of our two houses and preparations were underway to start siding. For dinner, the lovely Trinity Episcopal Church prepared a Marti Gras dinner of pancakes followed by a parade. 

Wednesday, March 9th

Shortly after arriving on site Mother Nature struck and sent a storm our way. Since the weather kept us from building we spent the day acting as Georgia tourists and toured the National Infantry Museum then headed to Alabama for dinner at a nearby Pizza Hut.

Thursday, March 10th

Windows and doors were installed in the house and the porch went up on the house today. We also started siding and tar-papering the roof.

Thursday night, St. Luke's hosted all of the Collegiate Challenge Teams for dinner and a talent show! Ashland University displayed a wide range of talents from Morgan Mirtes banjo playin', Brie Diehl and Kelly-Ann Carter's pick-up lines, Ashliegh Jarzenski's dancing, and Brie William's taekwondo board-breaking skills. Congratulations to Ashland's own Brie William's for winning first place in the talent show!

Morgan playing her banjo and singing Katy Perry's "FireWork"

Ashliegh dancing to Sam Sparro's "Black & Gold"

Talent Show Champion Brie showing some kick-butt Taekwondo moves

Friday, March 11th

The weather was beautiful during our last day in Columbus, Georgia. During our time on site we started shingling the roof, finished the siding, and blessed the house. It is tradition for Habitater's to write on the walls of the house to bless the house and the family that will be living in it. We were able to meet and talk to the family that would be living there and Ashland's team felt very blessed to be able to help out the wonderful Ingram family. 
A few of our blessings:

By the end of the week it was amazing to see how far we progressed during the Spring Break trip. When we arrived on Monday morning we had just a slab of concrete; by the time we left on Friday evening we had a house. 



Saturday, March 5, 2011

What up, Georgia!

Hello everyone back home! Just a quick update...

We loaded up and left Ashland University at 9 last night, drove through the night, and arrived in Georgia at approximately 7 this morning! Unfortunately, it looks like the rainy weather we left in Ohio followed us here.

Shortly after arriving we stopped at Cracker Barrel for breakfast. Let me tell you, I am loving the southern accents!

We are now back on the bus and on our way to Atlanta to visit CNN, Coke-Cola, the aquarium, Centennial Park,  and whatever else we decide to do!

<--- Sleeping Beauty (Jim)

Carolyn and Rachel playing checkers after their breakfast

Ryan and Liz relaxing on the rocking chairs

Ashliegh being...well..herself.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Exec Board Member Profile: Ashliegh Jarzenski, Off-Campus Fundraising Chair

Ashliegh Jarzenski
Off-Campus Fundraising Chair
Year: Freshman
Major: Broadcast Communications
Minor(s): Journalism & Speech Communications

How many years have you been involved in Habitat For Humanity?
first year

What is your favorite memory with Habitat For Humanity?
Although I haven't gone on the trip yet, I have gone on a few local builds and participated in many fundraisers. I'm very excited to be going on the trip and meet all the wonderful people who chose to volunteer during their spring break. I'm so excited and we'll definitely be making memories that last a lifetime!

Why do you love Habitat?
I love Habitat because it is a unique way to give back to the community. I love that the organization not only shares a home with those who need it, but gives them hope and a future with their "hand up, not a hand out" philosophy. 

Friday, February 25, 2011

Exec Board Member Profile: Ashley Christman, On-Campus Fundraising Chair

Ashley Christman
On-Campus Fundraising Chair
Year: Sophomore
Major(s): Political Science & Psychology

How many years have you been involved in Habitat For Humanity?
two years

What is your favorite memory with Habitat For Humanity?
I think last years spring break trip in general has to be my favorite memory. Building a house, tearing down a house, rebuilding it, cleaning garbage off the streets and volunteering at a food bank with a bunch of awesome people in sunny Georgia- WHAT COULD BE BETTER??

Why do you love Habitat?
Habitat gives to people in a way unlike other charities. Home is where your heart is, and with habitat we help build homes for people who appreciate them so much.Volunteering with Habitat for Humanity is a very rewarding experience and, besides, being able to say "I BUILT A HOUSE" is pretty legit. :D

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Exec Board Member Profile: Jalessa Brown, Marketing & Communications Chair

Jalessa Brown
Marketing & Communications Chair
Year: Freshman
Major: Criminal Justice
Minor(s): Psychology, Sociology

How many years have you been involved in Habitat For Humanity?
First year

Why do you love Habitat For Humanity?
It gives people a chance that they normally wouldn't have.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Exec Board Member Profile: Tracy St. John, Collegiate Challenge Chair

Tracy St. John
Collegiate Challenge Chair
Year: Junior (Class of 2012)
Major: Early Childhood Education, 4th & 5th Grade Endorsement, Reading Endorsement

How many years have you been involved in Habitat For Humanity here at AU?
This will be my 3rd year participating in the Habitat Spring Break Trip

What is your favorite memory with Habitat For Humanity?
There's no way I could pick a favorite memory! From building two houses, to meeting the families, seeing our house furnished and being lived in a year after we built it, meeting people from all over campus, being able to build with one of my best friends, goofing off in the evenings down by the river, and singing obnoxiously in the cars...I LOVE my Habitat Spring Break trips and it is impossible to pick out a favorite part.

Why do you love Habitat For Humanity?
I love Habitat for Humanity for many reasons. Habitat is such a great orginazation that really lives by its motto "a hand up not a hand out". Habitat strives to assist families that have tried and failed in the past and have no where else to turn. In assisting them though, Habitat ensures that they also assist those around them as well, and by providing a family with the neccesitiies such as a warm bed, a safe environment, and a place for their family to live together, then the other necessities in life for them such as work, education, and food are much easier to come by. Knowing that we can help take young children and their parents off the streets and put a strong and beautiful roof over their heads is amazing to me. I look through the pictures of houses we have built in the past and it often makes me cry thinking that something as simple and as short as our week long spring break can change the life of another. 

Friday, February 18, 2011

Habitat For Humanity Exec Board 2011

Becky Schaaf- Director of the Center for Community Service
Carolyn Reville- Social & Training Chair
Chris Casey- Local Builds Chair
Tracy St. John- Collegiate Challenge Chair
Jalessa Brown- Marketing & Communications Chair
 Ashley Christman- On-Campus Fundraising
Ashliegh Jarzenski- Off-Campus Fundraising
Katie Davis- Advocacy Chair

Igloo Build During Sibs N Kids Weekend!

Make sure to join the Habitat For Humanity Team in the Student Center during Sibs N' Kids Weekend!

Bring your younger visitors over to build marshmallow igloos and enjoy free hot chocolate!

When: Saturday, February 19th, 3-5 pm
Where: Student Center

Be there!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Can't remember what to pack?

So you can't remember what to pack for the Spring Break Trip? Well, here's your packing list!


Hello Habitaters! Welcome to Ashland University's Habitat For Humanity Blog!

We'll be posting updates here about our spring break trip to Columbus, Georgia, the summer trip to Washington,  information on local builds, and our various fundraisers! During our trips we will also be keeping everyone in Ohio updated on whats going on via blog posts, video blogs, and on our Facebook! So stay tuned!