// Sponsored by State Farm® (my social media fee was donated to Habitat for Humanity) and all views are, as always, my own.
Throughout the fall I’ve been documenting my experience of volunteering for Habitat for Humanity across my social media channels as a part of the State Farm Neighborhood of Good® initiative. You can catch up with all the blog posts in my volunteering series right here. Today, I’m excited share the final post in the current series which looks back at the highlights from my volunteering day with Habitat for Humanity NYC. I was volunteering as part of Habitat for Humanity’s A Brush with Kindness program, which is a natural extension of their house-building work. They works mainly with the New York City Housing Authority to revitalize community centers across the city. We went down to the Lower East Side of New York to Hamilton-Madison House, which is a housing settlement that was established over 100 years ago, to give one of their classrooms a fresh lick of paint and playful new look.Myself, my heart mate and some friends including the lovely team from Madera, Aaron from The Modern Otter, and my good friend and wedding photographer, Jean-Laurent Gaudy, got involved in transforming a children’s classroom into a jungle theme (watch out later in the post for some amazing animals we painted!). The day began with a safety briefing from the Habitat for Humanity crew leaders, and then we quickly formed a human chain to move all the paint and supplies from downstairs to upstairs classroom. Then, we got put to work preparing all the walls and floors, we taped off the windows, plugs, and floors and took off all the items on the walls. After that, the fun part started: we taped off long grass like plants ready to prime and then paint in the first of the forest green colors chosen by the creative team at Habitat for Humanity. Checkout the fun time-lapse of me and the team doing this below!
Throughout the day we kept adding layers of different colored bushes and vines, first priming the wall where the bushes or vines were and then doing two to three coats of color over the primer. Once the final coat of paint was added, we got to peel off the tape and reveal the scene. We all had so much fun! It was really nice to get out of the office for the day, not to look at emails, and instead talk to one another and focus on doing something for others that wasn’t based around a computer.
The A Brush with Kindness crew were so great, too. Before the volunteering day, they scoped out the room, had a plan of action for the day and gathered all the supplies so we could get going straight away. Towards the end of the day we got get creative and added some jungle animals to the scheme. Luckily, Kirsten and Aaron are great at drawing and so they drew a parrot, monkey, snake and panther, which the rest of the team then painted in. You maybe have seen me painting the parrot, affectionately named Percy, on Instagram Stories! We all decided that he was very #MakeYouSmileStyle with his bright colors!
I can’t tell you how much fun it was on the day. We had such a good time with the crew – it was just so lovely to gather a group of friends and do something together for our community. I’d love to make it a more regular thing, at least something I do annually during the holiday season to give back to those in need. Thank you to all my amazing friends who generously gave up their time to volunteer with me – you all rock! If you want to get ahead of those New Year’s resolutions, why not head over to the State Farm Neighborhood of Good
website to find volunteering opportunities near you!