ReStore reaches outSenior mass communication major Katie LeVan spends her time during the week organizing and stocking shelves at Habitat for Humanity ReStore. She does this and balances her schoolwork – all with a smile on her face.
With the picture of a typical college student, LeVan is part of a bigger mission that is breaking the mold by volunteering in Milledgeville’s Habitat for Humanity ReStore.
The second-hand goods store specializes in furniture, appliances and surplus building supplies, with all profits going toward ending the plight of substandard housing.
The Habitat for Humanity uses 99 percent of the funds gained through the ReStore toward refurbishing and building homes in Milledgeville and Baldwin County and tithes the remaining 1 percent to build homes in developing nations.
LeVan has embraced the idea of leaving a positive impact on people in the community and in the world.
“I feel it is important for students to realize and become aware of the notion that we have the power to make a difference in the community,” LeVan said. “Let’s come together with the goal to give people a safe place to call home. Let’s build houses for those in need.”
Executive Director Murali Thirumal, a GC alum, is encouraging students to shop in the ReStore.
“The ReStore for Habitat was created for two reasons: to generate income to augment the building of the new homes and create an avenue where anybody and everybody can shop for household items, especially furniture,” Thirumal said.
Utilizing the ReStore can provide students with an opportunity to shop for their apartments and homes while knowing that their money is going to support those in need.
Because Habitat for Humanity is a non-profit organization, it thrives off of the time and support of volunteers.
“We have one staff member and this is a full-time operation,” Thirumal said.
Maggie Milner, a volunteer executive assistant and GC alumna, is asking for students to come and be a part of the cause.
“We are always looking for help,” Milner said. “We love having people come in and learn about Habitat and give us an extra set of hands. We are working to start building again, so we need as many people as possible.”
The ReStore is open to any student or community member who wants to become involved.
Thirumal is asking that students provide a commitment up front to volunteer on a regular basis.
“There’s always a need for volunteers, even if it’s only two hours a week,” Thirumal said.
If volunteering is difficult to juggle between classes and other activities, the ReStore always encourages donations, from goods to money.
Junior biology major Anne Zimmerman, the Honor’s Program Volunteer Coordinator, is currently partnering with Habitat for Humanity to bring a fundraising option to GC on Oct. 3 at Atkinson Hall.
“World Habitat Day is done yearly to raise awareness on the needs in our region and in the world,” Zimmerman said. “A $3 donation will display the students name at the Habitat for Humanity, but we encourage and accept donations of any kind.”
To make a difference in the community and learn more about Habitat for Humanity’s mission, visit www.milledgevillehabitat.org for more information on volunteering and donating.