The Executive Director's Blog

From John Paukstis, Habitat for Humanity of Metro Maryland, Inc.

Habitat on the Hill-2016

20160203_162354February 2-4, 2016

Millions of families today are stuck between a rental market they can no longer afford and a homeownership market for which they do not qualify. The Silent Housing Crisis, J. Ronald Terwilliger Foundation 

We were on the Hill last week….

Every year around this time, Habitat affiliates from around the U.S. descend on Washington to advocate for support of policies that promote broader access to safe, decent and affordable housing in your community.

We visited the offices of Representatives Van Hollen, Delaney, Edwards, Hoyer, Sarbanes, Cummings, and Cardin to encourage them to support these policies.

For more information about Habitat’s federal policy priorities in the U.S., please visit

Our 2016 policy priorities include:

  1. Supporting comprehensive housing finance reform with a specific focus on broadening access to mortgage credit.
  2. Prioritizing funding for critical resources for housing and community development for FY2017:
    • Department of Housing and Urban Development:

Self-Help Homeownership Opportunity Program (SHOP): $15 million

HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME): $1 billion

  • Corporation for National and Community Service (Labor-HHS): $1.1 billion

Please contact your representative today to advocate for these policies that will promote safe, decent and affordable housing solutions.

Here is the link to HFH Metro Maryland’s performance though February, 2016.


Women Build 2016-I Am Woman, Hear Me Hammer

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Women Build brings together women from all walks of life to address the housing crisis facing millions of women and children worldwide. This year’s National Women Build Week will be from April 30th – May 8th. On a local level, Habitat for Humanity Metro Maryland’s Women Build week will focus on 2 vacant foreclosed properties that we have purchased. The work we will accomplish over 10 days will include: flooring, drywall, installing appliances and countertops, trim work, painting, etc.

Our goal this year is to raise a combined total of $25,000 through the efforts of women in our community. We want to empower women while improving the lives of low-income, hard-working families in Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties. Through our corporate sponsors and 10 teams of strong women, we have high hopes that this year’s National Women Build week will effect great change in our community!

Click Here to help support our Women Build Campaign!

Women Build Flyer 2016_Page_1Women Build Flyer 2016_Page_2




Bank of America–Friday, January 15th

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Bank of America executives volunteering on a Habitat construction site in Riverdale (Prince George’s County) on Friday, January 15.

These high energy folks worked on demolition of the interior of a vacant foreclosed house in preparation for a complete makeover, including new electric, plumbing, roof and siding.   Many thanks to Theresa Seighman and Jeannan Peterson of Bank of America for their continued support of Habitat’s mission to provide decent and affordable housing.




Looking for adventure?  Join us on an excursion to Nepal….








Learn more about our 2016 Global Village trip to Nepal! Nepal Video

For more information about the trip see: Nepal Oct 2016 Nepal Flyer

Rockville ReStore & New Home Cleansings


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 Our ReStore will relocate from Gaithersburg to Rockville in mid-February and double in size to 22,000 square feet.

We had a cleansing ritual to remove any negative energy in the new ReStore building on East Gude Dr., Rockville.  Although we might not always be able to sense an energy imbalance; we are nevertheless affected by it.  Some areas/buildings feel comfortable us to, while others may make us feel edgy, depressed or anxious to get out.  When we cleanse, we’re replacing undesirable energy with desirable or positive energy.

We cleanse a building by putting some white sage into a bowl and lighting it on fire.  We go to every door and window in the building and “wash” them with the smoke by directing the smoke onto the window or door.  We do this until we feel that all the negative energy has left.

A cleansing ritual of four vacant foreclosed houses in Prince George’s County.

These houses are in distressed condition.  Habitat guts these homes and completely rebuilds them.  Volunteers love to do demo and there is plenty of it.

Closing prayer after a ritual cleansing is from Isaiah 58:10-12

Feed the hungry!  Help those in trouble!  Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you shall be as bright as day.  And the Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy you with all good things, and keep you healthy too; and you will be like a well-watered garden, like an ever-flowing spring.  Your sons and daughters will rebuild the long-deserted ruins of your cities, and you will be known as “The People Who Rebuild Their Walls and Cities.”

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