Home Builders Foundation’s (HBF) Annual Celebration event, presented by Alpine Lumber, on October 26th at Infinity Park Event Center was a milestone event. The evening got off to a lively start as nearly 300 supporters, friends and colleagues reconnected while enjoying cocktails and delicious food and engaging in friendly competition for the numerous items in the Silent Auction.
Devin Bundy, HBF’s 2022-2023 Board President, kicked off the formal program by sharing the enormous impact the home modifications HBF provides has had on more than 2,200 individuals living with a disability in the organization’s first 30 years. He noted that what started as a philanthropic idea from a few members of the home building industry has grown into an invaluable resource that has elevated lives in eight counties across metro Denver. HBF’s first notable projects were for survivors of the Columbine High School shooting and, in early years, the nonprofit typically completed just a few projects a month. Since then, the nonprofit has grown at a rapid pace to meet the ever-increasing demand from the community. Bundy also praised HBF staff and his fellow board members stating, “My involvement with HBF has been one of the highlights of my professional life.”
HBF executive director, Beth Forbes, revealed many milestones as she shared the organization’s 2023 achievements. In 2023, HBF will complete 300 work items for 150 clients – more than in any year of its 30-year history. Forbes also noted that demand for HBF’s services is higher than ever and that applications have risen by 33% this year. She thanked HBF’s supporters saying, “The retail value and community impact from these projects will be close to $2 million this year alone. We are able to make this type of impact because of your donations of labor, materials, supplies and funds.”
The evening’s keynote speaker, Karina Sartiaguin, further highlighted the importance of HBF’s work. Sartiaguin was paralyzed during a drive-by shooting in 2010 when she was just 16 years old. After learning about HBF, she submitted a request for an accessible bathroom in the 1950s home she shares with her parents and two siblings. Following an initial site visit, HBF recommended an addition to the home, including an accessible bedroom, bathroom, laundry area and ramp to the backyard, to provide the most independence for Sartiaguin. “I thought I was being punked until the building crew showed up and I realized how truly caring everyone was,” joked Sartiaguin. She expressed how the impact extends beyond physical improvements, stating, “I now have the independence to dream of bigger and better things for my future.”
Sartiaguin’s remarks resonated with the crowd during the Paddle Raiser and led to another milestone in HBF’s history – raising more funds than in any previous year. Forbes ended the night with heartfelt thanks, “It is so gratifying to be surrounded by people who share our commitment to elevating lives for those with disabilities. Both the need and the costs continue to grow, and with the support of this industry we look forward to enhancing independence and elevating lives for the next 30 years.”