Over the past six months, I have had the both inspiring and personally gratifying opportunity to volunteer at the Iowa Valley Habitat for Humanity. My role as a volunteer with them is much less hammers and nails, but with a tool I know how to use well, my camera. I answered the call for a volunteer photographer found on the local Habitat office's website, not knowing how completely amazing the opportunity was to see into such an impacting organization that is solely centered on building communities, not just homes.
Much to my surprise, Habitat for Humanity doesn't just build volunteer-made homes for those in need. Yes, that is the major function of the organization, but much of their operations and programs are focused on supporting children and families, the environment, and the community. While building safe, decent, and affordable housing, they aim at improving the community and the organizations within it. As they eloquently state it, "We are building hope, and we are building lives."
Operations orchestrated by the Iowa Valley Habitat include the Home Ownership and Construction program, ReStore, Furniture Project, Many Hands Home Improvement for those with mobility impairment, Light Work home efficiency program, and Weatherization.
In addition to covering their program work, I have also been introduced to one of the families that will be living in one of the homes being constructed this year and have been documenting some of their normal life activities. The Bernal family is made up of six amazing and warm people who will be moving into their home near to City High later in 2012. Read about them and their story here: http://bit.ly/M5TmzP
To view my complete photo coverage please visit Justin Torner Creative Studio for all of their volunteer's pictures.
To volunteer, visit their event page