People tend to like to do what they are good at, what they’re passionate about. So it’s no surprise that the team members at Haselden Construction are passionate about building! Helping people with our industry expertise is not only a natural thing for us to do, but also shows others how putting our construction skills to use for just one day on a weekend can make an astounding difference.
What’s the Story?
A few weeks ago, approximately 130 Haselden Construction team members, their families, and students from the Colorado State University Construction Management Cares & ROTC program joined Extreme Community Makeover in the Swansea neighborhood to work on improvement projects throughout the neighborhood. The Haselden/CSU group had 12 teams that worked on 11 houses and one business. Projects included yard clean-up, trash removal, painting, and fence repairs.
Pedro Cabrera, a senior project engineer at Haselden, took part in the volunteer day. “At the end of every day, when the sun goes down, I reflect on how I did that day. I don’t think on how much I got done or how many things I knocked off my list. Instead, I reflect on how much I help others by giving my time, using my talents, and donating my treasure. The Extreme Community Makeover experience made me feel I accomplished my purpose in life. We measure who we are by how much we help others. Albert Einstein said: ‘Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile.’”
Haselden was part of a larger effort that the Extreme Community Makeover had organized for the day. In total, nine organizations came together to work on the neighborhood. “It’s great to see so many people come out for the community,” said Haselden Director of Corporate Marketing Tracy Mathieu. “When we all come together like this, we get an incredible amount accomplished in just one day.” Tracy was one of Haselden’s team leaders and organized Haselden’s involvement in the event. “Giving back to the communities we live and work in is something all of us at Haselden strongly believe in. Extreme Community Makeover is definitely something we’ll do again.”
What Exactly Is Extreme Community Makeover?
Extreme Community Makeover (ECM) was started in 2008, and since then, has brought together nearly 28,000 volunteers and close to 2,250 residents to complete projects in eight neighborhoods—Barnum, Elyria, Globeville, La Alma/Lincoln Park, Swansea, Villa Park, West Colfax, and Westwood. The projects they take on include improving homes, cleaning up alleys, and removing graffiti. They also give neighbors and volunteers a chance to get to know one another. A large part of ECM’s purpose is to “build relationships between neighbors and across neighborhoods.”
“Extreme Community Makeover is making a direct impact in our city and in Denver neighborhoods,” stated Executive Director Angela Bomgaars. “Life can get overwhelming and it makes a difference to know that someone cares and is willing to give of their time to help a neighbor with projects at their home, accomplishing things that would be much more difficult to do alone. In turn, people are connecting with one another through these projects, building stronger relationships, and building a stronger community where people make it a priority to help one another.”
ECM has also received grants to pilot programs such as “time banking” where residents exchange goods and services with each other via time instead of money. This is another way for neighbors to connect with each other and again fulfills ECM’s purpose of bringing communities closer together.
Are you interested in working with Extreme Community Makeover? Individuals and groups can both participate, and the two main project opportunities are adopting a block or doing alley clean-up and graffiti removal. You can learn more about them here!