In honor of the five year anniversary of the HBF’s Executive Director, Beth Forbes, we have five questions for her…
Question: What are you most proud to see accomplished at the HBF?
Answer: Growth and partnerships.
Growth – The number of recipients served nearly doubled in the first year I was at the HBF (from 19 to 33). And, continued to grow to about 80 for the past two years. In addition to an increased number of recipients served, we added two major events – Pucks for Possibilities and the Blitz Build. Each of these events now raise significant funds and awareness for the HBF, which of course, leads to more people served through projects
Partnerships – I’ve been fortunate enough to meet many individuals, companies, organizations and foundations over the past five years that have generously supported the HBF. In addition to all of the annual, event and corporate sponsorships and existing partnerships from organizations like NMSS and Craig Hospital, new notable community partners include the Denver Metro Fair Housing Center (partnership established in 2013 and has committed more than $300,000 to our program), Pinehurst Sanger Foundation (relationship established in 2011 and has committed close to $50,000 toward projects), AV Hunter Trust (relationship established in 2011 and has committed close to $20,000 toward projects), and Professional Miracles Foundation (relationship established in 2015 with $12,000 committed).
As the HBF works to serve more individuals, these partnerships are crucial to getting the word out about the HBF’s services to potential recipients and to finding the funding to make these projects a reality.
Question: What has been one of your most challenging situations of 2015, and how it was overcome?
Answer: It seems like each year there is a new challenge to overcome. In 2015, it was the spring rain. Projects across the building industry became backlogged in May. This delay lasted the rest of the year. To deal with this, the HBF gathered the insight and expertise of board members for industry trends and expectations. We also put an emphasis on recognizing and thanking those who gave so much. Finally, we worked to show that despite the challenges and bumps in the road, the HBF was still helping people and impacting their lives in a very real and tangible way.
Question: What are you looking forward to accomplishing at the HBF in 2016?
Answer: I am looking forward to helping solidify a foundation for long-term success.
Last year, a small group of current and past board members began working to define the HBF’s long-term vision. We are fortunate enough to be a position to be thinking long-term and big-picture for the organization. The vision process is well underway and is the biggest item on my 2016 to-do list. I am excited for that to unfold.
Once the vision established, it will drive everything the HBF does – its program, operations, fundraising, financial management, volunteers, etc. This vision will allow us to work more efficiently and ultimately have greater impact.
I am also looking forward to improving our relatively new unskilled volunteer program. The unskilled volunteer opportunities offered in 2015 were a huge success. That said, the demand is still much higher than the number of unskilled opportunities available. In 2016, we are working to figure out a way to match anyone who is interested with a way to help.
Question: What was one of your most favorite HBF moment?
Answer: In 2011, I saw my first HBF FULL remodel from start to finish. This project was for Marsha Ann, who had suffered a spinal cord injury during a surgery complication. I remember going out on the initial site visit and then seeing the completed project. It included 2 ramps, converting a powder bath and laundry room into an accessible bathroom, and installing hard flooring. The work was done so well that I could hardly remember what it looked like before!
Question: What is your favorite reason to work at the HBF?
Answer: The best reason to work at the HBF is the real, hands-on impact we have. I’ve interacted with each and every one of our recipients on some level. I’ve seen the impact of the work completed by the HBF. I’ve witnessed the change from the initial site visit where everything is a struggle to the completion of a project where independence is regained and quality of life restored. And, the start of where life beyond the ramp begins to unfold.