Prisma Health employees on Feb. 24 traded health care work for hammers and volunteered for a Habitat for Humanity build where they worked on eight homes in six South Carolina counties as part of the inaugural Prisma Health Partnership Day.
It’s the largest one-day build in Habitat for Humanity South Carolina’s history, according to a news release. Volunteers flocked to Simpsonville, Columbia, Clinton, Seneca, Liberty and Sumter to help build homes in various states of completion. Prisma also contributed $80,300 to the Upstate and Midlands projects.
Prisma Health President and CEO Mark O’Halla said the company has worked with Habitat for a number of years, but issues related to COVID-19 have kept the company — and a number of others — at bay for a couple of years. However, O’Halla said the volunteer sign-up sheets filled up fast.
O’Halla said everyone in the company — from the executive cabinet and administrators to nurses and doctors — joined the effort to complete the eight homes.
“It’s something good we can do for the community,” he said.
And it couldn’t have come at a better time.
John Lattimore, vice president of programs for Habitat for Humanity of Greenville County, said a lack of volunteers because of COVID-19, supply chain issues and increasing costs of construction materials have taken a huge toll on Habitat builds. He said Habitat didn’t have regular volunteers for more than 10 months in 2020. The price of lumber has gone from about $10,000 for a typical home to about $20,000-$25,000. That, and all the other cost increases has driven the price of habitat homes up $20,000-$30,000, he said.
“Those donated dollars don’t go as far,” Lattimore said.
In 2020, Habitat for Humanity South Carolina planned on building 14 houses but only managed half that number by the end of the year. Still, Lattimore said Habitat is continuing its focus on promoting home ownership in neighborhoods where it might not prominent in certain neighborhoods.
“It’s a great way for the community to come together to solve a problem,” Lattimore said.
Want to get involved?
- To volunteer, click here
- To donate, click here
- To support a build, click here
- Donate to Habitat Re-Store, click here