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Organization name: HAND Inc.Who’s telling the story: Andrea Davis, Outreach & Fundraising ManagerHow can we reach you: firstname.lastname@example.orgWhere can we find you: HAND is based in NoblesvilleWebsite: www.handincorporated.org
How does your organization serve the Westfield Washington Township community? HAND works to develop and preserve affordable housing throughout Hamilton County. It also is a founding member of the Hamilton County Home Repair Partnership, which provides critical home repairs and modifications to low-income homeowners. Although HAND does not yet own property in Westfield Washington Township, it has provided home repairs to Westfield residents.
Tell us the history of the organization. Founded as Hamilton County Area Neighborhood Development Inc. in 2003, HAND began as the development arm of the Noblesville Housing Authority. Since then, the organization has developed seven affordable apartment communities in Hamilton County—in Carmel, Cicero, Noblesville and Sheridan—and acquired an existing 33-unit rental community in the Boone County seat of Lebanon. This summer, it announced plans to build nine units of senior housing in nearby Tipton County. All told, it has invested more than $21 million in affordable housing options.
Is there a particular moment or memory that stands out?Last year (2018) was a significant one for HAND for two reasons: It developed its first rental community in the affluent community of Carmel, and it expanded its services beyond Hamilton County.
What is the biggest challenge you face?Like all nonprofits, we are always raising money to fund operations, which is a challenge. One challenge that is unique to HAND is its need to overcome misconceptions about what affordable housing is — and who it serves — to garner community support for planned developments.
What is the biggest success you have seen?HAND has developed or preserved almost 140 affordable apartments for low-income residents of two of the state’s fastest-growing communities, and momentum is building.
Do you have a need for volunteers or donations? HAND always needs donations, which allow the organization to continue working to address a critical shortage of affordable housing options in the suburbs. We utilize volunteers for specific projects – including spring and fall property cleanups.
If so, please let us know how we can help?Make donations to HAND: (http://www.handincorporated.org/donate/), sign up to volunteer (http://www.handincorporated.org/volunteering/) and/or attend one of HAND’s special events. Next up: HAND Housing Conference on Sept. 20 (http://www.handincorporated.org/events/2019-housing-conference/) and Stay Home for HAND on Nov. 9 (http://www.handincorporated.org/events/stay-home-for-hand/).
Is there anything else that you would like to share? Where we live impacts every aspect of our lives. Our homes are the foundation for our health, education, safety and economic well-being, and HAND works to ensure everyone has access to the building blocks of success.