Engineering Firm Continues Tradition Of Supporting Homeport
There is nothing ugly about wearing tacky clothes – if it is for a cause.
Just ask employees of civil engineering firm EMH&T in Columbus who for the third consecutive year participated in an “ugly sweater” contest that raised thousands of dollars for Homeport.
From Board Room meetings to sidewalk construction, EMH&T employees wore nonsensical attire on December 13, raising $4,550 for Homeport’s mission of providing quality affordable and workforce housing in Central Ohio.
“There were 15 sweaters designed by employees this year, with 15 other ‘lucky’ employees getting to wear them throughout the day,” said Paul C. Davis, EMH&T Marketing Coordinator.
EMH&T employees, along with company matching dollars, have netted Homeport almost $14,000 from ugly sweater contests in 2015, 2016 and 2017.
Keeping Residents Home
Through The Columbus Foundation's Gifts of Kindness fund and a grant from Big Lots, 68 Homeport families received emergency financial assistance in 2017.
The one-time allocations, mainly for rent and utilities, totaled $95,450 last year. Playing a critical role in creating stability for residents, connecting them to emergency funds, were Homeport property managers Wallick Communities and Community Properties of Ohio.
Seniors See The Zoo -- At Home
Columbus Zoo & Aquarium Pays A Visit
From birds to turtles to baby alligator and skunks, members of Homeport's senior communities got to feel like they were at the zoo in December thanks to visits from the Columbus Zoo & Aquarium and its Animal Ambassador Program.
Residents of Elim Manor, Eastway Village and Fieldstone Court were up close and personal seeing and touching Zoo creatures in special visits arranged by Homeport's seniors services provider, National Church Residences.
"My challenge was to find something unique and intriguing to bring into the community to get residents out of their daily routine even if it was for a little bit of time," said National Church Residences Services Coordinator Erin Brady. "Overall i think it was a success and the residents really did seem to enjoy the experience and have asked if it will be brought back again."
'Winter Wonderland' at Emerald Glen
With the idea of creating "community," Homeport oversaw the first Winter Wonderland program at its Emerald Glen community on the west side of Columbus. Approximately 100 children from 25 households created art work and wrote short stories at or in time for the Dec. 15 event held in Emerald's clubhouse.
The event was an outgrowth of a Emerald Glen resident's participation in 2016 of a NeighborWorks America Community Leadership Institute (CLI) program. Homeport staff and property management company CPO helped in creating and managing the event along with after school provider Ethiopian Tewahedo Social Services (ETSS). A special donor paid for prizes including computer tablets and racer scooters.
"Winter Wonderland is the first of eight events expected as an outgrowth from the CLI initiative," said Mark Childs, Homeport service coordinator. "We expect Winter Wonderland to be a regular program at Emerald."