September 2020
Fall Brings Change!
I love the fall season! It is a time of renewal – layers of old are peeled off and the cool air of change sets in. It reminds me of personal development, both for the staff and for myself.

Reflecting on those days of change here at Habitat, I remember so many times when decisions were made to set aside the old and embrace the new. We had to peel back practices in order to find a way to truly “blossom” in the spring.


  • We sold our 50,000 square-foot ReStore on Groesbeck because it did not make financial sense to support such a large space.
  • We purchased a 19,000 square foot building in Shelby and are seeing levels of revenue that keep our operation going and strong.
  • Over the years, I have hired two seriously amazing Chief Operating Officers. Both were blessings to this affiliate and one eventually became the CEO of a neighboring Habitat!
  • We embraced new programs and discarded the old.
  • Our Board and leadership team welcomed people who lived outside of the county and encouraged them to apply for our home-ownership program because we believed in following the law and the most ethical course of action.
  • We welcomed ALL people into our programs regardless of anything that set them apart in any way.
  • We outsourced all accounting functions saving thousands of dollars and becoming more efficient. This board decision saved us!
  • Most recently, a fabulous online ReStore was created by our COO during the COVID-19 shutdown!

While all of those changes were happening, we stumbled a few times.

For me, when it was time to get lean, I made a poor choice and laid off one employee whose heart was truly with this affiliate – keeping one or two whose hearts (in my opinion) wandered. I will always consider this as my worst blunder, but it taught me so many things: Value those who may not be the most outgoing but whose spirit and actions are in the right place, and do not be dazzled by fast-talkers or fast-doers. They fizzle fast.

This fall, we are ready to throw out the things that are not working. Change is the best thing we can embrace, and we must question everything every single day.

  • Are we putting our partner families first?
  • Are we discriminating against anyone – even subconsciously?
  • Do we thank our donors, volunteers, board and staff enough?
  • Are we open to learning new things? Best Practices?
  • Can we find ways to collaborate?
  • Can we learn from our mistakes?

The leaves are beginning to twist and twirl on their way to the grass. Nature has a way of stripping things down to the barest of bones and starting again after a pause.

That is what we are doing here at Macomb Habitat. We are recreating, re-inventing, and saving the best for a strong mission and a fabulous year regardless of COVID-19 and any other challenges we must face.

Now if we could just get a gallon of fresh apple cider and a dozen sugar donuts, - all will be especially right with the world.

With every best wish,

Helen Hicks
President and CEO
Patrick N’Gola New Home Closing at Hand
In last month’s newsletter, we told you about one of the families we are serving and his struggle to obtain home ownership. As of today’s date, most of his home is close to being finished. This week, the cabinets are being installed, his home has been painted, the walls are repaired, the bathroom has been updated, and carpets are being laid.

The story generated a great deal of response, and we want to thank all those who donated and offered to volunteer.

At this point, Patrick’s home still needs the following:

  • Bushes and other foliage for the outside
  • Volunteers to landscape
  • Volunteers to edge the grass
  • Basic furniture for his family includes:
  • 2 sets of bunk beds
  • 1 Queen bed
  • dressers
  • Round kitchen table with 6 chairs
  • 2 couches in very good condition
  • A few supportive living room chairs
  • And a few lamps and side tables

If you can help by volunteering to finish the house, email Dave Tirsell.

If you can donate furniture, email Helen Hicks.

Thanks to everyone for bringing Patrick and his family to a new place of peace!
Upcoming Events
Exclusive Home-in-One Golf Classic is Almost Here!
The Exclusive Home-in-One Golf Classic is fast approaching! Monday, September 28th it all tips off at Greystone Golf Club and is sponsored by JMC Electrical Contractors.

Space is limited, so register today!
Women's Luncheon back on!
Honorary Co-Chairs Maria Silamianos, Anna Craprotta, & Sophia Merkouris cordially invite you to Macomb County Habitat for Humanity's
Women Who Show Courage
Women's Luncheon

Join us Wednesday, October 14th at
the Italian American Cultural Society
from 11:30 am to 2:00 pm
located at 43843 Romeo Plank Road in Clinton Township.

Limited to 100 Women; First Come, First Served!

$30 Lunch Fee


Speaker Lineup includes two guest speakers and one family partner.
Champion of Champions
A Philanthropic Competition for
Leaders in the Community
Champion of Champions is a 16-week challenge, a competition between community leaders and their teams who raise funds for Macomb Habitat for Humanity in honor of a local family of the year.

Candidates build strong campaign teams to support and expand their reach, where each dollar raised is equal to one vote. The team who has the most votes, (money raised) is named the Champion of Champions at the finale event May 1st.
Volunteer Update
Faith Build Project on the Home Stretch
After a pause to allow trades to work on the home on Garfield St. in Roseville, volunteer days have resumed each Saturday. Wall insulation will go in on Saturday the 12th, and the rest is planned through late October. The Volunteer Calendar lists the expected tasks. Tasks may change depending on progress each week so check the calendar regularly. Our tentative plan:

  • Sat. 9/19- Plan to prime paint, do kitchen tile
  • Sat. 9/26 - Finish paint, tile, and trim
  • Sat. 10/3- Interior doors, laminate flooring
  • Sat. 10/10 - Cabinet install, flooring, landscape prep
  • Sat. 10/17 - Shed build, landscaping, punch list

Age 17 on up, no experience needed. A safe setting, with hand washing station, sanitizer, gloves provided.
Librarians and Bibliophiles Needed for Shelby ReStore
We are receiving a large donation of children’s and youth books for sale in our ReStore over the next month or so. We need the help of a person or two who loves books to help organize and display the items so shoppers can browse easily. Pick when each week you want to come in for a few hours and help the book section of our Shelby Township ReStore shine!

Contact Dave Tirsell with questions.
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio
Regular Volunteers Needed at Shelby ReStore!
The Shelby ReStore is in need of regular volunteers. Choose a time to volunteer Tuesday through Friday, 10 am to 2 pm or 2 pm to 6 pm.

Volunteer duties include the following:
  • managing displays
  • processing home goods
  • some lifting
  • mask and work gloves required

Grab a friend or two and improve your health while helping others. Together we can reach more families with shelter solutions!
Browse a multitude of popular products from the comfort and safety of your own home. Pay securely via the web, and then pick up your items from the Shelby ReStore.

Tuesday - Friday 10:30 am - 5:00 pm
and Saturday 10:30 am - 4:00 pm.

46660 Van Dyke in Shelby Township
between 21 Mile and Hall Road

Use the website contact form or call (586) 263-1540 with any questions.
The ReStore is currently looking for the following items to be donated:
  • lawn and garden items
  • patio/outdoor furniture
  • grills
  • upholstered furniture (in good condition)
  • lighting
  • children's desks/desks of any kind
  • toilets
  • usable lumber
  • working power tools
We DO NOT ACCEPT the following:
  • bedding and towels
  • clothing
  • mattresses and box springs
Call ahead to reserve a pick up time, or ask what drop off hours are available. (586) 263-1540

ReStore Locations

Shelby ReStore
46660 Van Dyke, Shelby
between Hall Rd. & 21 Mile

Warren ReStore
23211 Van Dyke, Warren
at 9 1/2 Mile

Store Hours
Tues-Fri: 10 am - 6 pm
Sat: 10 am - 5 pm
Leave a Legacy Through Macomb County Habitat for Humanity
Has Covid-19 prompted you and your family to examine your finances and consider a will or trust? Consider including Macomb County Habitat for Humanity in your legacy plans, so that families in need of better shelter in our area can be supported in years to come. Let us know if we are part of your legacy for the future, so we can be prepared as well.