Habitat for Humanity of Faulkner County Executive Director Patricia Hoskins has plans to keep the organization’s volunteers busy this fall.
Hoskins has several projects planned to bring attention to and raise money for Habitat for Humanity. Hoskins is the organization’s only paid staff member, but she said she has an active board of directors and one full-time volunteer.
Hoskins came to Habitat in March and is the local organization’s first female executive director. Because she is the first female in her position, Hoskins said she wants to leave her mark by increasing the number of houses built and increasing the visibility of the organization.
"Everyone knows we need financial contributions, but we also need donations of land, abandoned houses, volunteers and donations of resalable goods," Hoskins said.
The goods will be used to stock the Habitat for Humanity ReStore that will open on Van Ronkle Street on Sept. 7.
The Habitat for Humanity office is located in the Van Ronkle location.
"I moved from the other location to do this," Hoskins said.
The ReStore is a staple among Habitat’s across the country. Hoskins said several Habitat for Humanities in surrounding areas "make a tremendous amount from the ReStore."
"We plan to start small to offset some of our costs," Hoskins said.
The organization is accepting new and used residential building supplies and home furnishings from individuals, contractors, remodelers, retailers and wholesalers. Some items will be used in the construction of Habitat homes, but much will be offered for sale at the ReStore. Appliances that are less than 10 years old, doors of all types, hardware, tools and unopened paint as well as clean, unstained carpet.
In addition to offering products at a lower price, Hoskins said the ReStore "offers a service that saves usable materials from the land fill while providing these materials to the public at a fraction of the cost."
The Restore is just one of the fall projects Hoskins has on tap. Another is called Tap for Habitat and is planned for November. On the designated day, residents will have the opportunity to go into participating restaurants and make a $1 donation for a glass of water.
"A small amount makes a major difference," Hoskins said.
Hoskins is also hoping to gain ground on groups working to build houses. Currently, the 19th house being built through Habitat is an Apostle Build. Although the typical Apostle Build has 12 churches working to build a house, in Conway, there are only seven churches participating, Cornerstone Church, First Presbyterian Church, Greater Fellowship Church, Grace United Methodist Church, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, New Life Church and St. Peter’s Episcopal. The premise for this type of build, according to Hoskins, is "Jesus’ choosing 12 disciplines to go out and complete the mission of not only spreading the gospel, but doing good works."
She is also hoping to plan a Women’s Build. This program began nationally in 1998 and is underwritten by Lowe’s. To kick off this project, Hoskins is forming the Pink Hat Club. Women can join the club to receive a pink hard hat, hammer and work gloves. The membership money will be used as seed money to start the house.
"This does not exclude men, just encourages women," Hoskins said.
A Biker Build would include the third group Hoskins hopes will join Habitat to build a home. She said this could include motorcycle, bicycle or scooter enthusiasts.
"The great thing about Habitat is the sky is the limit," Hoskins said.
She also hopes to branch out beyond Conway into Greenbrier, Vilonia and Mayflower in the near future. Each home costs between $55,000 and $77,000 in money and in-kind donations. The new owners of the homes are given no interest loans in the amount of the cost of the home. Hoskins said mortgages range from between $150 to $400 per month.