Why Give? Stories from new and longtime donors who choose to change lives

Rick & Micki Damato
Since 1989 Rick has been involved as a volunteer, board member and donor locally, regionally and internationally. When he married Micki they spent their honeymoon on a Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter work project on Stanton Island NY fixing homes damaged by Hurricane Sandy. According to Rick, “Some folks wonder why people spend their time and money to travel around the world to build homes with people they do not know…for me, it is many things, including the opportunity to meet people from other cultures. I’ve been to many places where people have made an indelible mark on my life.” Micki believes firmly that supporting Habitat in all ways ensures lasting change. Micki said, “It is uplifting to meet the people we are building for knowing we are changing lives here in Gwinnett and on our annual Carter Work Projects.”

Sancha Walker
“Having a home was always a part of me,” said Sancha. “I grew up in Jamaica, then moved to Canada and then the US. I always felt I missed out on the stability of one place to call home. I wanted to be sure others would have that opportunity.” Starting a new chapter in her life, Sancha believed it was time to stop saying having a stable home was important. She decided to just invest in helping make affordable homes available by donating a large portion of her proceeds from selling a home.

Rosalynne Cole
Rosalynne has always given generously to charity even when she was carefully budgeting to have a down payment for her own home. The stability of owning a home is important to her. She believes the Habitat model for homeownership that requires families to learn to budget their income changes lives for families for the better. Through God’s grace she believes she will always have enough to give abundantly to others.

Ron and Nancy May
Ron volunteered when his church, Sugarloaf United Methodist Church, sponsored construction on four homes. He then volunteered at the Gwinnett Habitat ReStore. As a result of learning from the “ground up” how the Habitat model works, Ron and Nancy decided helping build safe affordable homes was a cause they wanted to support by giving generously.

Don and Kelly Goldsmith
“Giving a hand up and not a handout” resonated with Don and Kelly when they chose to volunteer on several home builds sponsored jointly by all the Lutheran Churches in Gwinnett County and Thrivent Financial. Kelly further explained the importance to her and Don of Habitat being a Christian Organization with values that align with theirs. Experiences on worldwide builds helped them realize just how blessed they are living in this country and believe they have an obligation to help others with the gifts they have been given.