I didn’t really know what to expect when I volunteered for Habitat for Humanity, I just thought it would be show up and cut this, nail that, wrong! The project site was the Acme Crescent II project and I volunteered along with Nabeel & Kiran on Oct 21 and the overall experience from background, to build, to teamwork is an example of how much is involved in getting these projects done; we even had the CEO Ene Underwood for Habitat pay us a visit. This project happens to be the second phase of their building projects on Acme which is on target to build 6 additional semi-detached homes, they have already built 8 homes adjacent to the site.
When you volunteer for Habitat for Humanity you automatically think of what’s been donated/volunteered such as tools, materials & labour, but what struck me was the story on how they got the land to build. Part of the land belonged to the apartment buildings facing the back of the construction site. The land was donated by property owners which is what gave Habitat the opportunity to expand their build on that site. We all know how much land is left in Toronto so when I heard this story I thought it was pretty amazing!
The crew leads on site were very knowledgeable and friendly. When working with new teams on a daily basis you think it would be challenging, especially since a majority of people are volunteers and do not have experience in the trade. This didn’t phase them at all, they took the time to make sure you understood the big picture and not simply join two pieces of wood together, they really made the overall experience fun, educational & productive. The volunteers were a mixture of students, individuals and skilled tradesmen. Some of the students were architectural engineering students and in speaking with them it was funny to hear that they knew the type of frame they were building or joist but didn’t realize how much work and effort there was into building something that looked so easy on paper. For me it was properly learning how to use a hammer. I was caught massaging my arm and I was told to let gravity do the work and that I really didn’t need to drive the hammer with so much force, it made all the difference in the world lol.
I hope to make another trip out in the next few weeks, I really enjoyed my time and I look forward to my next outing.