I'm back for my third year with Women Build and this time I'm leading my own team of friends and colleagues at Tandem! I'm in this because I believe that homeownership is one of the most dynamic tools a person can use to build a strong and stable future. I felt this for myself with the purchase of my first condo, which was only made possible through generous aid and guidance of a woman in my life. Before that, I figured I'd rent all my life, it never felt attainable as a single, woman in the arts to be able to afford to own even a small condo in the city.
There's security that comes with owning your own home that I craved, like not having to move every year when rent goes up more than your pay or not worrying that the rules may change and my dog would no longer be allowed or that an ignored maintenance issue may cause a calamity. On top of that, there's a connection you feel to your neighborhood and community when you own which is powerful and even more important when you have children to care for. However, homeownership is denied to far too many women in our city. The disparity in homeownership can be traced to the gender pay gap and its impact on credit profiles, to uneven childcare responsibilities that consume time and financial resources, to higher rates of mortgage denials despite superior payment performance...the hurdles keeping women from homeownership are high, particularly Black women in Chicago.
Habitat Chicago actively works to even the playing field. They are a nonprofit committed to championing healthy neighborhoods by investing in resident priorities, building quality homes, and supporting homeownership. My team, alongside 600 other determined women are working with Habitat to fundraise August - October and will participate in our own Build day in West Pullman on Oct 21. Together, we will help our fellow women become homeowners with affordable mortgages!
You can make a difference by helping me reach my fundraising goal! All of the money raised goes to Habitat for building materials (boy have those prices gone up!). The professionals working on the homes are volunteers, just like my team. In addition to the physical materials, Habitat also helps with training programs for financial literacy and homeowner know-how as well as providing affordable mortgages to their training graduates.
Change happens one person at a time. I appreciate any support you can give - big, small, or somewhere in between. This program is doing a lot of great work. I hope you feel as honored and excited to support it as I am.