Habitat for Humanity improves lives in Seattle through housing

June 10, 2020
Regence employee volunteers with Habitat for Humanity Seattle-King County

Regence supports the nonprofit for its mission of building strength in the community

By Regence

Main photo: Regence BlueShield employees volunteering for Habitat for Humanity Seattle-King County prior to COVID-19 and related physical distancing guidelines

Housing costs in King County, which includes Seattle, continue to rise faster than people’s incomes. More than 100,000 families pay more than half their income for housing, which means it’s difficult for them to pay for other necessities and they are at increased risk of losing their home.

Habitat for Humanity Seattle-King County has made its mission building strength, stability and self-reliance in the Seattle area by increasing access to affordable housing. This is why Regence BlueShield is proud to support the organization.

Since 2014, Regence has partnered with Habitat for Humanity Seattle-King County and other local Habitat affiliates across the state to boost their programs and support hundreds of home-build projects.

In order to meet current needs, King County would need 156,000 new affordable units today, and 244,000 units by 2040. Habitat Seattle-King County is doing its part by building affordable homes, repairing homes for low-income residents and seniors, operating discount home improvement stores and mobilizing a large team of volunteers.

Habitat’s critical impact in the community was on display last week at its annual fundraiser, the Beyond the Build Virtual Experience. In 2019, Habitat Seattle-King County made repairs at 29 homes; and provided housing solutions for 69 families, including 72 children, 33 seniors, 11 people with disabilities and seven veterans. The nonprofit led a group of 1,527 volunteers, who gave 21,896 hours of service.

Regence BlueShield President Tim Lieb is the current board chair of Habitat for Humanity Seattle-King County. At last week’s Habitat event, Tim had a conversation with Seattle Seahawks great Doug Baldwin about the importance of giving back to the community, and how to show empathy to the community during the COVID-19 pandemic. The conversation with Tim and Doug was recorded in late May, but Doug’s message of empathy is especially relevant given the events in the U.S. of the past few weeks.

We should all find a way to support others and understand their challenges, Baldwin said. “Look at our neighbor as a fellow human being looking to thrive and survive on this planet.” See the full conversation below.

 

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