Contact Your Elected Officials: Proposed House Budget to Zero Out SHIP

Call to Action
Proposed House Budget to Zero out SHIP
No money at all for FY 2018-19, other than funding for hurricane recovery, has been allocated. SHIP (State Housing Initiative Partnership) dollars help Habitat make mortgages more affordable. Supported by the Sadowski Housing Trust Fund, the Florida House proposes eliminating these dollars and continuing to diminish housing resources….leaving a smaller allocation for hurricane relief only.

Florida House of Representatives

Email or call your representatives in the Florida House of Representatives. You can find your House members here.



Dear Representative ____________:

The residents of Broward County, including our workforce, our elderly and special needs populations, need affordable housing. Our employers and our economy need affordable housing. We thank our Senators for a budget that uses all the housing trust funds for housing; no sweeps.

We urge our House members to stop sweeping the housing trust fund monies and join the Senate in using all the housing funds for housing. Please help your constituents by speaking up in favor of using housing funds for housing – we are relying upon you.


Florida Senate

Email or call your Senator. You can find your Senator here.



Dear Senator ____________:

The residents of Broward County, including our workforce, our elderly and special needs populations, need affordable housing. Our employers and our economy need affordable housing. We thank our Senators for a budget that uses all the housing trust funds for housing; no sweeps.

We urge the Senate to hold firm to its position; we will encourage our House members to stop sweeping the housing trust fund monies and join the Senate in using all the housing funds for housing. Thank you for helping your constituents and the communities you serve by using the housing trust funds solely for housing.

Marcia Barry-Smith to be Honored as a Woman of Distinction

Barry-Smith (Right) with US House Representative Barrington Russell District 95

Congratulations to Marcia Barry-Smith, Director of Community Outreach/Program Services for being selected as a 2018 Woman of Distinction by the Lauderhill Regional Chamber of Commerce! Barry-Smith, one of ten honorees, is being recognized for her leadership in the community.

This recognition from the Lauderhill Regional Chamber of Commerce comes on the heels of the Inclusive Economic Opportunity Award that Barry-Smith received from the Broward County Chapter of the United Nations Association of the United States of America (UNA-USA) in October 2017. 

Highly regarded as an expert in community development around the nation, her nationally acclaimed program Homeless to Homeowner has placed hundreds of formerly homeless families into homeownership, empowering them to reach for independence and financial fitness.

Barry-Smith serves on numerous boards including the Broward County Housing Council and the Lauderhill Local Affordable Housing Committee. A Lauderhill resident, she received a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Toronto. 

Interested in attending the awards ceremony on March 2, 2018 to support Marcia? CLICK HERE to purchase tickets!

6th Annual Bike to Build Event

6th Annual Bike to Build Event

Pedals up! Join First Presbyterian Church of Fort Lauderdale for the sixth annual Habitat for Humanity Bike to Build event on February 17, 2018.

The route begins at the church (401 SE 15th Ave, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301) and heads east down Las Olas Boulevard. The 25-mile ride continues north on A1A, turning around at the Hillsboro Inlet. The 50-mile ride continues north, turning around at Linton Boulevard in Delray Beach. There will be a delicious post-ride brunch from 8:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. on the church campus.

All donations will be applied toward a homeownership in Broward County, fulfilling Habitat for Humanity’s vision of a world where everyone has a decent place to live.

A minimum donation of $100 per person or $500 per team is required to participate.

To register click here. For more information or to become a sponsor, contact Kathy Craven at or (954) 593-0423.



Click here to download the brochure.


Habitat Broward Featured on WSVN

Source: WSVN | Published: December 18, 2017

“Cirque Dreams, Habitat for Humanity decorate 6 news houses for holidays”

South Florida homeowners received a special housewarming gift from Cirque Dreams performers and Habitat for Humanity.

Performers from the internationally-acclaimed show, Cirque Dreams, stopped by with a festive surprise for some Habitat for Humanity Broward homeowners, Monday.


Click here to view the full article and WSVN segment

Habitat Spotlight National Philanthropy Day: Robert Taylor Jr.

On National Philanthropy Day, we are pleased to honor our Chair, Robert Taylor Jr.  To-date Robert has helped Habitat Broward provide more than 400 hard-working low-income families with safe, affordable housing in South Florida and other U.S. cities.

Robert and his family-owned company, Burdette Beckman, Inc. have faithfully sponsored a Habitat home each year and are philanthropic leaders in Habitat’s newest community: A Rick Case Habitat Community. With a long history of community volunteerism and leadership in nonprofit organizations, Robert is also actively engaged with Sheridan House for Boys and Girls, First Priority and Hispanic Unity.

The Taylor family appreciates the role philanthropy plays in improving lives.

This Savannah, Georgia native has earned two bachelor’s degrees in Spanish and Business from Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. We are honored to have Robert serve as our Chair and our National Philanthropy day honoree.


Habitat Spotlight of the Month: Kelly Kolb

On Saturdays, Kelly Kolb can be found in his hard hat on our build sites, making the dream of homeownership come true for Habitat families. Kelly joined the Habitat Broward Board of Directors in 2015 and currently serves as first Vice Chair. Kelly also chairs the Legal Committee and is a shareholder and attorney with the law firm Buchanan Ingersoll Rooney.

Kelly represents management and executives in discrimination and retaliation cases, EEOC investigations, non-compete litigation, USDOL wage and hour audits, FLSA overtime lawsuits, ADA accessibility lawsuits, whistle blower lawsuits, workplace investigations, and unemployment claims.

 When asked, Kelly notes that his greatest professional accomplishment is having advised clients (early) on employment issues so that they have never faced a claim or lawsuit on those issues. He is also proud of the fact that his greatest personal accomplishment is that his wife, of 32 years,  is still his best friend, and his three daughters still give him hugs when he gets home at night.
When Kelly is not at work, chasing the kids or trussing a Habitat House, you can find him kayak fishing off the beach or listening to live music with his wife at any one of South Florida’s many music venues.

Homeowner Hurricane Recovery

Habitat Broward Homeowners: how have you been affected by Hurricane Irma? Have you experienced a loss or suffered damage to your home due to the storm? Do you need to be connected to resources that can provide you assistance? If your answer is yes, please visit this page for detailed information and advice.

Do you need food or water?

There are several agencies assisting with aid in the area. Hands on Broward in conjunction with the United Way of Broward County have been key in leading volunteer efforts.  For more information visit: For help identifying resources, call 211.

Have you experienced a loss?

Florida residents with losses due to Hurricane Irma may be eligible for Federal Disaster Assistance from Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Individuals and business owners who sustained losses in designated areas can begin applying for assistance by registering online at or by calling 1-800-621 FEMA (3362). Telephones will operate from 7am to 10pm seven days a week until further notice.

Transitional Sheltering Assistance: FEMA may provide Transitional Sheltering Assistance (TSA) to eligible disaster survivors who are unable to return to their homes for an extended period and need shelter. TSA provides short-term lodging for eligible disaster survivors whose residence is uninhabitable or inaccessible. To be eligible for TSA, individuals and households must:

  • Register with FEMA for assistance.
  • Pass identity and citizenship verification.
  • Have a pre-disaster primary residence located in a geographic area that is designated for TSA.
  • Be displaced from their pre-disaster primary residence as a result of the disaster.
  • Be unable to obtain lodging through another source.

Applicants will need the following to apply: Social security number, daytime telephone number, current mailing address and address and zip code of the damaged property, and private insurance information, if available.

Has your home been damaged?

If your home has sustained significant damage, you should contact your insurance company. If you are unable to locate your insurance information, we are here to help. Email: and please provide your name and loan number if available.

Has the hurricane impacted your ability to make your mortgage payment?

Please email You may be eligible for a forbearance of your mortgage payment for up to 3 months.

Watch out for scams!

Watch out for people or companies that want a fee for helping you file an insurance claim or to access services. Con artists sometimes pose as government employees, law enforcement and insurance adjusters. Government employees never charge to help you get a benefit or service. Do not give out personal information to people you don’t know.

Be wary of contractors selling repairs door-to-door, especially when they ask to receive payment up front or offer huge discounts. Only hire licensed and insured contractors to work on your home.




Labor of Love Day Unites Washington Park Community

If we ever doubt that bringing people together is the solution to make things happen, look at Habitat for Humanity of Broward’s first-ever Labor of Love Day, held Monday, September 4th at the site of our most recent new build in Washington Park. Future Habitat homeowners, their families, Habitat staff and hundreds of local volunteers joined forces to build a safer, more beautiful community in an area that has long waited for reinvestment.

Neighborhood Revitalization project


For six-hours, on what for many was a day of rest from work, volunteers painted houses, laid sod, planted trees and shrubs and participated in general clean up around the Washington Park neighborhood in Fort Lauderdale.

“This is the essence of our mission. We do so much more than build houses. This initiative shows that by bringing hard working, motivated families together with community partners and philanthropists, we can indeed build homes, communities and hope,” said Nancy Robin, Habitat Broward’s CEO & executive director. “It was beyond heartwarming to see our families take ownership of their future neighborhood, and to see their children bonding and building lifelong friendships.”

Perhaps the most powerful and poignant moment came when all the future homeowners’ children, together with other children from the neighborhood, formed a two by two line to march from 9th Court to the local park…a route they must take on the way to school. Led by Commissioner Dale Holness with the assistance of Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, more than 50 children adopted the Broward Municipal Services District mantra, that “No child walks alone.” The program, designed to create safer routes and meet up spots for students to walk safely to school, was also accompanied by K-9 Deputy Kel Li and her Jimmy Ryce Foundation Bloodhound Macie, and by our mounted Broward patrol.

Walking School Bus Neighborhood Revitalization

Miami Dolphin Defensive Back Andre Branch, who had intended to participate but was called away to football practice, shared an encouraging video with the children and donated autographed pictures and footballs.

Service Providers from health and support agencies were also on hand to share little-known linkages to healthy eating, active living, access to books and other social services.

Labor of Love Day 2017 is the first such neighborhood initiative by Habitat Broward. Together with volunteers and future Habitat homeowners, it will revitalize communities to make them safer, more beautiful and more inviting places for current and future residents.

The event was made possible by underwriting sponsor BBX Capital Foundation, as well as the Broward Health Planning Council, Broward Municipal Services District and other  partners.

 To view more pictures go to:



Breaking Ground on 7 Homes in Fort Lauderdale

We are excited to break ground on the construction of seven new homes in the Washington Park community of Fort Lauderdale. These homes are part of a major revitalization effort by Broward County, Habitat for Humanity of Broward and other partners to create safer, more vibrant and family-friendly communities in the Broward Municipal Services District, an area long targeted for revitalization.

habitat for humanity groundbreaking

Helping to celebrate this historic occasion on August 23rd were (left to right) The Restaurant People’s Tim Petrillo, TD Bank’s Rob Pregnolato and Seth Dreyfuss, Habitat Broward Board Chair Robert Taylor, Habitat Broward CEO Nancy Robin, Broward County District 9 Commissioner Dale Holness, Broward County Mayor Barbara Sharief, Rotary Club of Weston’s Jack Mannix, Everbank’s Sheryl Bilus, and Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino’s Susan Renneisen.

Our special thanks go to Family Home Sponsors: Burdette Beckman Inc., Marine Industries Association of South Florida, Publix Super Markets Charities, The Restaurant People and the Pauline M. Weinacht Philanthropic Fund; and sponsors EverBank, Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood, Homeownership4All and TD Charitable Foundation.

Before & After Irma: What You Need to Know


As of this posting, Hurricane Irma is currently a Category 5 storm on the Saffir-Simpson Scale. IT IS CRITICAL TO PREPARE NOW!  Please do not wait to get your supplies – get gas, water, batteries, dry and canned foods, first aid kits, plastic bags and coverings. Two good guides are Sun Sentinel’s Hurricane Guide located at this link as well as Broward County’s Hurricane Guide available for download here (click here).

If you are in need of hurricane shutters for your home,

please call the Habitat Broward ReStore at (954) 763-7771 to inquire if shutters are still available.


A great way to stay in communication after the storm is the smartphone app Zello. The app can be used as a walkie-talkie in the event of an emergency. Many people in Houston used it after Hurricane Harvey and were rescued because of the app.

You can download Zello to your smartphone and/or tablet from the iTunes Store here or from Google Play for the Android app here

hurricane irma what to know



Please remember that Habitat for Humanity of Broward is not a disaster relief organization. We are not equipped to provide relief or repair services post-hurricanes.

If you are immediately available to volunteer after Hurricane Irma, please report to HandsOn Broward at 10:00 AM on Tuesday, September 12th – location: 5815 N. Andrews Way, Suite A, Fort Lauderdale, FL (right off the Tri-Rail station at Cypress Creek and I-95). For more detailed information about volunteer opportunities and what to wear, bring, etc. please visit HandsOn Broward’s Disaster Resources page here.

Broward County’s Home Damage As­sessment program enables residents to assist in quickly identifying areas of devastation, even before damage assessment teams are able to canvass the County. It’s easy and a great ser­vice to the community!

The Home Damage Assessment Program asks residents to report hurricane damage to their home as soon as it is safe to go outside. Here’s how it works:

  • When it is safe to go outside, survey the damage to your home and com­pare your home to the five Home Damage Assessment photos.
  • Select the photo that best represents the condition of you home for dam­age and/or flood level. It doesn’t matter if you live in a single family home, condo, townhouse, apart­ment, duplex or mobile home.

To report, call 311, or visit and select Report Home Damage, or visit  on your mobile device.

Should you be in need of repair services for your home after Hurricane Irma, please call your insurance company and/or contact the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) per the instructions at this link

We hope everyone remains safe and secure during and after the storm.