This is part two of a three-part series which can also be found on the Greater Indy Habitat website
Mission Part 2:
Community lies at the very foundation of what Habitat is. To be more specific, the foundation of Habitat actually took place at “Community.”
Habitat was founded at a place called Koinonia Farms. Koinonia is the Greek word for authentic Christian fellowship or communion. So when I say, “community lies at the very foundation of what Habitat is,” I mean it literally as much as figuratively. Habitat was founded at Community, in Community, and for Community. It is an integral aspect of who we are, where we’re from, and where we hope to go, and for that reason, Community is an incredibly crucial part of our mission.
From the very first steps we take with our homeowners, to the home dedications and beyond, the process we facilitate is oriented so that it constantly builds communities. We strive to make sure our homeowners are supported throughout their journeys, and we do everything we can to guarantee each homeowner knows they won’t be doing this alone. The staff, the mentors, the fellow homeowners, the volunteers, the board, and the sponsors all come together to make our mission possible. Every group and every individual is appreciated, and every group and every individual is vital to the journey of homeownership.
When the poet John Donne wrote, “No man is an island,” he was referencing the preponderancy of communities. When we succeed, we succeed because of the support of those who worked alongside us. Our lives and our actions are intrinsically woven with the lives of everyone we meet, as well as those of others we will never know. Communities enable us to experience joy, triumph, compassion, and love, in ways unimaginable in solitude. In order to do everything we can to ensure the meaningful success of our homeowners, we build communities.
But the communities we build don’t just benefit the homeowners. Ask anybody who has ever had the privilege of working alongside one of our homeowners on their future home. To witness firsthand the motivation, resilience, endeavor, and joy of someone building their own home, and especially to step alongside them in that missional cocktail, can be an eye-opening and life-altering experience. Not only is it true that together we are greater than the sum of our parts, but I believe that each of our parts becomes incontrovertibly and interminably greater as a result of recognizing our combined greatness.
This significance gets particularly emphasized in builds such as our Interfaith Build, wherein people from an abundance of backgrounds, and with a plethora of perspectives come together in a combined act of service. It proves that these builds aren’t just about houses, or about helping one person, though that alone would be spectacular enough. In perhaps the most commendable display of “E Pluribus Unum” I’ve had the honor to experience in my life, Muslims, Jews, Christians, and more, all came together to build one magnificent, impactful, loving community.
The good life is a product of good communities, and communities are the product of lives well-lived. Nothing good is attainable alone, and the best things in life become better when shared. Habitat builds homes that change lives, but it is the communities that make all of that possible. The foundation of every home we build is laid in the communities that built it, and that is why Habitat builds communities.