TROY — Habitat for Humanity of Miami and Shelby Counties, Ohio (HFHMSCO) commemorated the opening of its new Habitat Activity Center (HAC) on Thursday, introducing a facility to the public that is one-of-a-kind in the state of Ohio.
The center’s location, based at 150 E. Race St., Troy, was made possible by the relocation of the ReStore in July 2016 to its current location on Dorset Road. It was deemed uneconomical to sell and relocate the Habitat for Humanity offices, which led to plans for the 5000 square feet of vacant space to be renovated into a climate-controlled community center for carpentry and woodwork.
Renovations on the facility took 12 months, with an approximate cost of $80,000. A total of 91 volunteers donated 3,818 hours to the facility’s renovation.
The Habitat Activity Center features a full shop of state-of-the-art woodworking equipment, along with newly furnished kitchen, conference, and classroom spaces, with equipment and furnishings provided by generous donors throughout Miami and Shelby counties.
The facility will be used to benefit Habitat for Humanity’s Construction and Repair programs, as well as to support community carpentry and woodwork projects via an application submittal.
Classroom and hands-on education and training programs will be conducted at the facility for Habitat families, non-profit organizations, and members of the public on topics related to home ownership, maintenance, safety, landscaping, energy use, and more.
“We at Habitat are looking forward to engaging with the local community, especially non-profit organizations, in providing them an opportunity to submit applications for projects that will serve their constituents,” said Bill Horstman, executive director and COO at HFHMSCO. “It’ll be a controlled environment with supervised projects, and we hope that other organizations will take advantage of the opportunity.”
“The biggest advantage to us with this facility is that we can teach, train, assist, and build all year long, indoors where it’s warm, which we could not do previously,” said Dr. Reece Nickol, board president for HFHMSCO. “We think this center is going to do a lot more than just fill an empty space.”
Ryan Miller, executive director for Habitat for Humanity Ohio, referred to the center as “an incredible accomplishment.”
“It’s the only facility of its kind in Ohio, and potentially one-of-a-kind throughout the United States, in how it truly engages communities and volunteers throughout Miami and Shelby County,” Miller said. “When I think of collaboration, this facility is it.”
“More than anything, I think it’s a great example of what goes on in Miami County,” said Stephen A. Huffman, state representative for the Ohio House of Representatives. “The number of hours that people give to do for others is just wonderful.”
Habitat for Humanity of Miami and Shelby Counties is a faith-based organization seeking to provide residents access to quality and affordable homeownership opportunities. Habitat for Humanity International offers services to 1,400 communities and 70 countries worldwide, providing housing to over 10 million people annually.
For more information, visit www.hfhmco.org.