Collaboration is key in Habitat's new initiative

Collaboration is key in Habitat’s new initiative


Morris Herald-News

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2017 5:30 p.m. CST


By SARAH PETERSON – Executive Director, Grundy-Three Rivers Habitat for Humanity


Collaboration. In the nonprofit industry we continually hear about collaboration.


Collaboration is necessary for what we do so we can help more people without duplicating services.


Collaboration is something we already do well between agencies in Grundy County. Many nonprofits and social service agencies meet monthly as the Grundy County Interagency Council to share information and ways we can collaborate to help the clients we serve.


Recently, I attended a training with Devan Gagliardo with the Community Foundation of Grundy County about a new program Grundy-Three Rivers Habitat for Humanity will begin in the next couple of months. The new program is going to require several of partnerships between nonprofit and social service agencies.


The relationships we already have in place are going to benefit Grundy-Three Rivers Habitat for Humanity when we begin taking applications in a few weeks for our new program called Aging in Place. Aging in Place is an initiative set by Habitat for Humanity International and AARP Foundation to help seniors with home repairs so they can stay in their homes longer.


So what makes Aging in Place different than what Habitat is already doing? Aging in Place is designed to serve low-income seniors who own their homes.


Grundy-Three Rivers Habitat for Humanity will provide home repairs and modifications – interior and exterior – so seniors can achieve the strength, stability, and self-reliance to age with dignity in their homes and communities.


But Aging in Place is much more than a construction project. Not only is collaboration necessary for this program because we need referrals from agencies that are already serving seniors, but Habitat can also be a referral for these organizations. Habitat has always taken a vested interest in the families we serve and often we know what our clients’ needs are beyond housing and repairs.


Grundy-Three Rivers Habitat for Humanity will partner with local agencies to respond to the nonhousing needs of the homeowner, such as health, transportation, mobility, and food access.

Our goal with the program is to adopt a holistic approach for helping seniors age in their homes.


Habitat for Humanity’s vision is a world where everyone has a decent place to live and this vision extends beyond just building homes, but also reducing the number of substandard homes through repair projects. Grundy-Three Rivers Habitat for Humanity is committed to Habitat’s vision in Grundy County.


For information about Grundy-Three Rivers Habitat for Humanity, please visit us at