Ten Years Later...

Every family deserves a safe place to call home. A home to call their own. A home filled with love. A home they can depend on. For 26 years, Habitat for Humanity of Seminole County and Greater Apopka has worked to make that dream of homeownership a reality for the families in our community. Since 1991, our supporters have helped us to empower 272 people by guiding them toward their dream of owning a safe, affordable home. That's no small thing.

When families receive the keys to their new homes, they unlock the doors to better, brighter futures. Behind the doors of these homes, grades are getting better, health is improving, and family life is changing for the good.

Meet Ginger, a Habitat homeowner who partnered with us ten years ago! As a single mother, she was supporting herself and her daughter completely on her own. With the average monthly rental fee in the Seminole County area running at $1,027, life was hard to manage.


 Ginger and her daughter, Amaya, at the beginning of their Habitat journey

Ginger and her daughter, Amaya, at the beginning of their Habitat journey

“Life without Habitat would be very different for us,” Ginger shared. Without their new home, they would continue to struggle with heavy financial burdens, and Ginger's daughter would not be able to participate in dance and other activities. They would not have the space to give back and shelter others in their times of need. They would not be able to sit in their backyard and watch the planes fly overhead, traveling to and from the airport near their house. Simple pleasures truly make all the difference in feeling at home.

“I wanted to offer my daughter a home she could grow up in with stability. I have been able to take care of her on my own as a single mother and not depend on anyone. That would not have been possible if I was not able to have an affordable mortgage through Habitat for Humanity.”

 Giner and Amaya on the build site of their soon-to-be new home

Giner and Amaya on the build site of their soon-to-be new home

Strength, stability, and self-reliance have been restored, and Ginger has now enjoyed being a Habitat homeowner for ten years!

“We’re not just making it day by day here, we’re thriving.”

Contributions of time, energy, and money to Habitat are gifts that truly keep on giving… even a whole decade later! Without your support, these homeownership dreams wouldn’t come true. We ask that you continue to help us make each year even better than the last! #GiveTheGiftThatBuilds to your community when you give your time, efforts, money, or voice to Habitat. Every gift helps a family to help themselves, and together, we can continue to create a world where everyone has a decent place to call home.

Raise the Roof 2017


This past Saturday, Habitat Seminole-Apopka had the pleasure of hosting our second annual Raise the Roof dinner and auction, held at a private hangar at the Sanford Airport. Auction items up for grabs included salon and spa services, professional sports gear signed by teams such as the Orlando Magic and Miami Dolphins, cruise bookings, and tickets to see Hamilton the Musical on Broadway. Guests had the opportunity to mix and mingle, dine with friends, and enjoy live entertainment, all while furthering Habitat’s mission of providing families in our community with a safe, affordable housing situation.


One of the highlights of the night was hearing the compelling story of Habitat homebuyer and partner Dellanira. At one point, Dellanira and her two children were housed in a small room at a domestic violence shelter where they were forced to share a living space with others, and they simply did not feel at home. In May of 2016, Dellanira found out how Habitat could help her and her children to live a better life. “At that point, I felt like everything I had been through was worth it because I was about to give my kids a new start.” Her road to homeownership was finally underway. We cannot thank her enough for sharing her inspiring story with our guests at the Raise the Roof event.


Guests decorated their tables in themes of their choosing, ranging from holiday to superheroes. Guests then casted their votes for various awards -- funniest theme, most elegantly decorated table, and more. See the results below!

Funniest – Charlan Brock Associates

Most Elegant – Friedman & Friedman

Culture of Appreciation – Waste Pro

Home Construction – Prospect Development

People’s Choice – Look Local Marketing

Top Dog – Farmer's Insurance

Behind all of the excitement lies something greater than meets the eye. We’re building strength, stability, and self-reliance through shelter – and we have fun doing it! This event would not have been possible without the support of our donors, sponsors, speakers, and volunteers. Thank you for believing in our mission and we hope to see you next year. Together, we can create a community in which everyone has a decent place to call home.

thank you to all of our sponsors and volunteers who made this event possible!

CBA Architects

Su Casa Appraisals
Annunciation Catholic Church

Ryder Systems, Inc.
Farmers Insurance

Alberto    Hernandez
Todd    Lapierre
Pamela    Yoder
Israel    Quinones
Tammy    Megowan
Marcus    Rutledge
Heather    Lindsey
Daniel    Marple
Bob    Gorecki
George    Westerling
James    Wright
Terri    Lazarus
Timothy    Hooper
Terence    Brown
Andrew    Innes
Vincent    Bosse
Steve    Sanford
Charlie    Tapounet
Myrna    Tapounet
William    Brittian
Mike     Fernandez
Mackenzie    Humes

William    Mcclanahan
William    Craddock
Billy    Hackett
Adrienne    Craddock
Sharday    Warren
Sandra    Schiraldi
Ryan    Calederon
Rhonda    Jenkins
Riley    Henry
Nick    Reno
Malik    Johnson
Tatianna    Maenza
Laura    Jackson
Jim    Schneck
Jessica    Nickerson
Jessica    Torres
Ingrid    Richrath
Garrett    Damico
Eric    Trotman
Diamond    Pichardo
Mark    Friedman
Dessane    Bowers
Connor    deFreese
Josephine    Di Russo
William    Barker
Brooke Abzug    
Beatriz    Faustma
Alexander    Perez

How ReStores Help Habitat Seminole-Apopka


Habitat for Humanity ReStores play an important role in helping Habitat Seminole-Apopka build strength, stability and self-reliance through shelter.

With nearly 900 stores in 49 states, chances are you’ve come across a Habitat ReStore. If you’ve ever wondered how Habitat ReStores support Habitat for Humanity, you’re in the right place.

How Habitat ReStores serve Habitat

Most Habitat ReStores are owned and operated by local Habitat for Humanity offices. The proceeds generated by the stores go back to the Habitat for Humanity offices to be put to work in the local community. Additionally, these funds are used as part of Habitat offices’ tithe that helps provide decent shelter around the world.

When you support your local Habitat ReStore, you help families in your community partner with your local Habitat affiliate and you enable Habitat to work in other parts of the world.

Why Habitat ReStores are unique

If you’ve been to more than one Habitat ReStore, you’ve probably noticed that, unlike many home improvement stores, ReStores all look different. The stores have different layouts and stock different items. In fact, if you’ve visited the same store more than once, you’ve probably noticed that the items for sale change from day to day – or even hour to hour.

This individuality is what makes Habitat ReStore unique. Since stores are run by local Habitat affiliates, each one is specifically catered to best serve its local area. There’s no one-size-fits-all mentality here; every Habitat ReStore knows how to best serve their specific community.

How you can help Habitat ReStores

Inventory changes often at Habitat ReStores because much of the merchandise for sale comes from donations; what is for sale is based on what is donated. If you have been cleaning out your garage or are looking to replace your gently used furniture, Habitat ReStore may be the place for you to donate the items you are no longer using. For other items you can donate, see our article on "8 Things to donate when renovating," and you can even have your items picked up for free.

After donating at Habitat ReStore, stick around to do a little shopping. Just as your donations provide the items that stores sell, your purchases provide the proceeds that go to provide decent places to live.

Habitat ReStores also are always looking for great volunteers to help in this process. Get in with us today to see how you can help by shoppingdonating and volunteering.

Neighbors Helping Neighbors


This past week, we saw a large and incredibly powerful hurricane pass through our state. Many of our neighbors homes were impacted by historic flooding, downed trees, and loss of power. We also saw our community come together to feed families, offer each other respite from the heat, and support the first responders working hard to restore our neighborhoods.

As the lights (and air conditioners) slowly begin to turn back on, let's continue working hand in hand to help our neighbors. There is still work to be done and we're exactly the right people to do it. This week, sign up for a volunteer event right here in our community. Spend the day feeding families who lost all of their food or cleaning up a park that you love. You could even come out and swing a hammer on one of our build sites. 

Neighbors helping neighbors goes a long way, and we're all neighbors. 

In partnership,

Penny Seater, Executive Director
Habitat for Humanity of Seminole County and Greater Apopka

Need information on FEMA recovery assistance? You can find that information here. 

Preparing for Hurricane Irma


Hurricane Irma approaches Florida

With the path of Hurricane Irma projected to pass over the state of Florida, we wanted to send out a message to our friends across the country to let you know that Habitat Seminole-Apopka has taken all precautionary measures possible to ensure the safety of our staff and homeowners. As of yet, it is not certain to what degree Seminole County and the greater Apopka area will be affected by this storm, but we are preparing for the worst as we pray for the best. 

  • We will continue to monitor the weather, but for those wondering, our ReStores will be closed beginning Friday 9/8, returning on Tuesday or as soon as safely possible. As always, our priority is the well-being of our staff and partner families, so we will continue to assess the situation as more information becomes available.
  • All job sites have been cleared of construction materials and debris in preparation for the storm, and they will be closed until further notice. 
  • Habitat for Humanity International is preparing to expand its hurricane recovery response for those in the projected path of the storm in Florida and positioning response equipment accordingly. 
  • For updated information about Habitat Seminole-Apopka's storm plans, check our Facebook page where we will be posting updates as we know more.

For our friends in Central Florida, please exercise caution and stay safe as you make preparations for Hurricane Irma. Remember that your best sources for information about the storm and evacuation orders are always SeminoleCounty, Florida and NOAA NWS National Hurricane Center. As always, thank you for your support.  

AmeriCorps Blog: A bittersweet ending to an incredible chapter

 Cydney welcoming a cohort of Women Build volunteers in May this year

Cydney welcoming a cohort of Women Build volunteers in May this year

For two years, I have served as an AmeriCorps member. I have built trails in Missouri, taught Kindergarten and cleaned up a camp in Arizona, assisted in revitalizing a neighborhood in Texas, and most recently helped to provide strength, stability and self-reliance through shelter in Florida. Today I end my career as an AmeriCorps member. 

Before I joined AmeriCorps, I was blind to the issues we face in this country. It did not affect me personally, so I paid it no mind. That all changed when I decided to minor in Non-Profit Management and eventually joined AmeriCorps. For the first time, I was immersed the issues that many of our fellow citizens face and at times, it felt like I was in another country. 

 Cydney during her first AmeriCorps service year

Cydney during her first AmeriCorps service year

 Cydney and Habitat Homebuyer partner, Dellanira

Cydney and Habitat Homebuyer partner, Dellanira

The issue that stood out to me the most was poverty. The vicious cycle of poverty has an impact on so many things, from education to health, housing to child development. From what I could tell, there didn’t seem to be one root cause and there certainly didn’t seem to exist a solution to give people a hand up from it.  And then I began my second year as an AmeriCorps National member with Habitat for Humanity.

Habitat has an amazing reputation for giving people a hand up out of poverty. It has been proven that with an affordable and decent place to live, families can invest in things like their education and health. They can spend more time together and develop a sense of confidence. Habitat has developed a sustainable model for housing that works just as well here in Seminole County and Greater Apopka as it does in Chicago, Illinois or Chitwan, Nepal. Their reciprocal and adaptable model is what originally attracted me to the organization and it’s what has made my last year of service so impactful.   

 Cydney working on her first Habitat home!

Cydney working on her first Habitat home!

 Welcome volunteers to Magnolia Place!

Welcome volunteers to Magnolia Place!

During these last ten months, I have fallen in love with Habitat for Humanity's mission and the communities we serve. I am coming away from this term of service with a wealth of knowledge in volunteer management, construction, and a better idea of the issues our homebuyer partners face. I'm also coming away knowing that I have helped 15 families, mobilized close to 800 volunteers (increasing our volunteer engagement by 52 % in the five months I managed that program) and worked to revitalize two communities. 

While my time as an AmeriCorps member has ended, my time with Habitat for Humanity is only beginning. I have happily accepted a full-time position as the Community Outreach Coordinator with this affiliate! I will be managing our volunteer program and working to further develop our Neighborhood Revitalization program. I’m excited for the opportunity to expand on what I’ve been able to accomplish these last ten months and can't wait to continue to work side-by-side with this community to build a better future for local families. 

 Always very serious, Cydney celebrates Mayor's Day of Service

Always very serious, Cydney celebrates Mayor's Day of Service

 Cydney and from the Plymouth community in Apopka, our first partner neighborhood under our Neighborhood Revitalization program

Cydney and from the Plymouth community in Apopka, our first partner neighborhood under our Neighborhood Revitalization program

 The entire Habitat team breaking ground on our largest project to date, Juniper Bend. Interested in volunteering on this development? Cydney is your girl! Her contact info can be found below.

The entire Habitat team breaking ground on our largest project to date, Juniper Bend. Interested in volunteering on this development? Cydney is your girl! Her contact info can be found below.

cydney corwin
community outreach coordinator
americorps '17

Want to reach out to Cydney directly? Email her at NR@habitat-sa.org

Take action for housing advocacy

Every voice can advocate and help more families build strength, stability and independence. Take a few minutes of your time to let your representatives know you stand with the families partnering with Habitat to build a better future.

Housing finance reform
Use your voice today to ask leaders to support reasonable U.S. housing finance system reform.

Put an end to predatory lending
Help us ensure that loans should be fair to both borrowers and lenders by taking action now.

Solid Ground
Learn more about how we’re helping families gain access to the land they need to build a better future.

Act now: Save AmeriCorps
Protect National Service programs like AmeriCorps that are instrumental to our work by using your voice today.

Protect gifts that serve families
Help Habitat affiliates serve the greatest number of families possible through donated appraisals by taking action now.

Show your support for HOME
Help us continue to reach communities that need our help the most by showing your support today for HOME Investment Partnerships Program funds.

AmeriCorps Blog: Celebrating Volunteers & Women Build!

Volunteers are our life force here at Habitat. We could not complete our mission without them. This spring marks two major volunteer events here at Habitat Seminole-Apopka: Women Build and the annual Volunteer Appreciation Party.  Both of these events are new to me. While I have participated in a Women Build event, I have never had to help organize one. And again, while I have attended a Volunteer Party, I have never had to help plan one. But, thanks to some pretty amazing staff members, I had plenty of assistance and gained some valuable knowledge in planning special events! As an AmeriCorps member, you learn quickly how to think on your feet, because often you will be thrown into situations you have never had to handle. While this can be frustrating at times, in my opinion it has made me better at my job. As I stated earlier, it does help to have an incredibly supportive staff.

So, let’s start with Women Build. For Habitat affiliates across the country, the month of May is about celebrating women through Women Build. For those of you who are unfamiliar, Women Build is an event held every year meant to empower women and provide the opportunity for women to serve in their communities. I think that as women, we too often we underestimate ourselves and our abilities, especially in a male-dominated field like construction.  

This year our women builders raised more than $149,000 and about 113 people put in over 452 hours on one of our construction sites.  They did everything from putting up drywall to building exterior walls and hanging sheathing. Many women learned to use a circular saw, nail gun, and (for some) a hammer for the first time.  What was even more fun to watch were the friendships and encouragement between women who, in many cases, barely knew each other before their build day. These women are not only building up our community; their building up each other.  


This is what all our volunteers do. They help to provide strength, stability and self-reliance through shelter here in Seminole County and Greater Apopka. So, on May 17th we celebrated all our volunteers and recognized a few of those who have gone above and beyond. We celebrated our Women Builds, we celebrated Mike and Kenny, construction volunteers that are on site every day and we celebrated Brenda for ten years of extraordinary service at our Restore.  But it was not just us here at Habitat that celebrated the volunteers!  The community came together to celebrate them as well: Sonny’s BBQ donated the food, the City of Longwood donated the space and several business donated gift cards and certificates.

I am so grateful to be a part of such a generous community. We have some of the best volunteers around! Thank you for helping us to accomplish our mission!

cydney corwin
community outreach coordinator
americorps '17

Want to reach out to Cydney directly? Email her at NR@habitat-sa.org

Changes happening at the ReStore!

Changes happening at the ReStore!

If you’re already a frequent shopper at our ReStore locations in Casselberry and Sanford, then you know that things are changing for us with each flip of the daily calendar! Not only do we have new donations rolling in every day of the week, but we’re consistently busy making changes to grow and improve, especially when it comes to our customer experience.

Local builders partner with Habitat for Home Builders Blitz 2017

Local builders partner with Habitat for Home Builders Blitz 2017

Local builders partner with Habitat for Humanity of Seminole County and Greater Apopka and a local family to build a new home as part of nationwideHome Builders Blitz. More than 200 families across the country will build strength, stability and self-reliance withsupport from professional builders and suppliers during the week of June 5-9.