“In all of the current chaos shaking the world, Jack and I get to stay at home and feel safe. We are in our home, able to self-isolate, safe and secure. We’re actually able to enjoy this time together, rather than worry. That is a gift not afforded to many in this global pandemic." – Rebecca, Habitat homeowner

Dear valued Habitat Greater Ottawa supporter,

First and foremost, I hope you and your loved ones are staying safe and healthy.

Even though every aspect of our organization has been touched by the COVID-19 pandemic, we are committed to continuing to provide much-needed housing for vulnerable families. On behalf of the Habitat Greater Ottawa team, I want to give my sincere thanks for your support of Habitat’s work in the community.

This crisis has amplified the critical need for more affordable housing in Ottawa. We are told that staying at home is what will save lives and help end this pandemic. But for many families in Ottawa, “sheltering in place” is a difficult reality as they are living in unsafe or inadequate housing. Many are also facing significant impacts on their financial, physical and emotional health.

In January the City of Ottawa declared a housing and homelessness emergency and crisis. More than 42 percent of households in Ottawa pay an unaffordable rent, and there are more than 12,000 families on Ottawa’s Centralized Waiting List for social housing. Many more families are living in unaffordable, overcrowded, run-down housing insufficiently maintained by landlords. The families we serve at Habitat Greater Ottawa have lived in these types of situations for years with no hope of finding better housing. Following this economic downturn, even more families will have difficulty obtaining a mortgage, and will be unable to build up savings as they live paycheque to paycheque to make ends meet.

Safe, stable and affordable homeownership plays a critical role in helping families to build a strong foundation and the opportunity to create lasting change. Your generous donations have given Habitat families like Rebecca’s a safe, stable and affordable home in which to safely shelter in place.                                                                                     

Your ongoing support ensures that Habitat Greater Ottawa can continue helping more families purchase their first home. With more than a third of our families moving from social housing, your contribution will also help free up much-needed space on Ottawa’s social housing waitlists. 

Our organization is facing challenges like never before. Many homeowners have lost their jobs and are asking for mortgage payment relief. Our ReStores have closed and we are actively pivoting to an online model. As a result, our community supporters are more important than ever. With your help, Habitat Greater Ottawa will weather the economic downturn caused by the pandemic and we will continue eliminating barriers to a better, healthier and more financially stable life for families.

These challenging times call for an increased level of care towards one another. Our staff, volunteers and families have been staying connected and checking in with each other virtually. We hope you have also stayed connected this way. This mutual support and generosity will only make our communities kinder, safer, and ultimately stronger.

Yours in partnership,

Alexis Ashworth
CEO, Habitat for Humanity Greater Ottawa
613-749-9950 | aashworth@habitatgo.com

P. S. Your support has helped local families safely “shelter in place” and weather this difficult time. But we know that far too many families are struggling. Following this pandemic the number of people who will need access to safe and stable housing will only increase. We need your help to continue to grow the numbers of families served by Habitat Greater Ottawa. You can donate today by using the form to the right of the screen. Thank you for your generosity and support.

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