Education & Service Learning
At Habitat, we believe in teaching skills that are beneficial in many areas of life, not only for homebuyer families, but also for students in our community.
We prepare families for the responsibilities of owning and maintaining a home before closing on their house. Homebuyer families take classes to learn about homeownership, maintenance and financial management. Some financial classes listed are taken at our community partner ICCF, a HUD approved counseling agency who provides advice on buying a home, renting, defaults, foreclosures, and credit issues. These classes include:
Home Maintenance & Sustainability
Introduction to Homeownership
Understanding Your Mortgage
Long Term Planning
We are proud to collaborate with local high schools, colleges and organizations to provide a hands-on learning environment for students to develop green construction skills. Students work alongside Habitat building professionals, instructors and Habitat families to build a house from start to finish. Since 2004, students in Kent County have built nearly 30 homes in partnership with Habitat!
Through this service-learning experience, students prepare for careers in design, engineering and construction by learning skilled trades, establishing leadership traits and gaining pride as they invest their skills into our community.
Barb Molhoek had a way of brightening the lives of those around her. Even after her passing, she continues to do so through Habitat’s Learning Garden.
In partnership with the Kent Garden Club, Habitat’s Learning Garden allows us to teach homebuyers the basics of yard maintenance. Homebuyers learn in a hands-on environment how to care for their lawn and plants. Eight raised vegetable beds show homebuyers how to garden in small spaces.
The focus of the garden is native perennials. Maturing perennials are split to provide us with a renewable source of plants for landscaping. Splittings and donated plants are placed in the holding garden until they are ready to be transplanted into homeowner yards.
Educational & Research Partners
Bethany Christian Services
Grand Rapids YouthBuild
Ferris State University
Pathways to Prosperity
Grand Rapids Community College
Kent Intermediate School District
Applied Construction Program
Grand Rapids Public Schoolt
Academy for Design and Construction
Homebuyer financial education
East Grand Rapids High School
Grand Valley State University