Our Vision: A world where everyone has a decent place to live.

About Habitat for Humanity of Tompkins and Cortland Counties
Habitat for Humanity of Tompkins and Cortland Counties (TCHFH) is part of a global, nonprofit housing organization operated on Christian principles that seeks to put God’s love into action by building homes, communities and hope. TCHFH is dedicated to eliminating substandard housing locally and worldwide through constructing, rehabilitating and preserving homes; by advocating for fair and just housing policies; and by providing training and access to resources to help families improve their shelter conditions.  Habitat for Humanity was founded on the conviction that every man, woman and child should have asimple, durable place to live in dignity and safety, and that decent shelter in decent communities should be a matter of conscience and action for all.

The Tompkins and Cortland Counties affiliate was founded in 1987 by the Reverend James Cavanaugh of the Groton Community Church, United Church of Christ.  TCHFH currently sponsors the campus chapters of Cornell University and State University of New York in Cortland.

What we do
Habitat for Humanity provides a hand-up, not a hand-out. Partner families must have a steady income, qualify within our income guidelines (based on HUD guidelines of 30 to 60% of county median income), apply for home ownership, be a resident of one of our two counties for at least a year and must commit 500 hours of  sweat equity working on their own home, the homes of others, and attaining skills needed for self-sufficiency and responsible homeownership. Families must repay an affordable mortgage – we make sure families don’t pay more than 30% of their monthly income towards mortgage, home insurance, and local/school taxes. Payments go into a revolving fund to build homes for more families in Tompkins and Cortland Counties.

All are welcome
Habitat for Humanity of Tompkins and Cortland Counties has an open-door policy: All who believe that everyone needs a decent, affordable place to live are welcome to help with the work, regardless of race, religion, age, gender, political views or any of the other distinctions that too often divide people. In short, Habitat welcomes volunteers and supporters from all backgrounds and also serves people in need of decent housing regardless of race or religion. As a matter of policy, Habitat for Humanity International and its affiliated organizations do not proselytize. This means that Habitat will not offer assistance on the expressed or implied condition that people must either adhere to or convert to a particular faith, or listen and respond to messaging designed to induce conversion to a particular faith.

Green build policy
In 2007, the TCHFH Board of Directors adopted a build green policy. This affiliate is committed to building and rehabbing as energy-efficient and environmentally green as possible, while still ensuring that the homes are affordable. Our first green build was completed at 165 Tompkins Street in Cortland. The Fetterly family of five moved in February, 2009. We received an Energy Star rebate of close to $3000 and the family youngest child has not had to use her inhaler for asthma since moving into the house.

International support
For every house TCHFH builds here, in the United States, we are also committed to supporting HFHI’s international work to eliminate poverty housing and homelessness by providing significant financial support through HFHI tithe program.

We appreciate your support
Please support Habitat for Humanity of Tompkins and Cortland Counties by volunteering time and skills either on the construction site, at our office, or on a committee. Or donate buildable lots/land, vehicles, tools, and building materials. Or donate funds to help us pay for all materials/services we need that are not donated. Be a part of this exciting community team working to improve the lives of our low and very low income families; and of our community as a whole. With the support of individuals, businesses, and other organizations in our community, Habitat will continue to build affordable homes for families in need.

About Habitat for Humanity International
Founded in Americus, Georgia, USA, in 1976, Habitat for Humanity operates around the globe and has helped build, renovate and repair more than 600,000 decent, affordable houses sheltering more than 3 million people worldwide.  Habitat for Humanity is a Christian ministry dedicated to a vision of a world where everyone has a decent place to live.  HFHI’s motivation is to unite people around the concept of “putting God’s love into action” along with others from all faiths or with no faith convictions who are interested in helping those in need of improved shelter.  HFH conforms to recognized global standards that clearly state that agencies may not condition the receipt of assistance or participation in their work on any requirement that people listen and respond to a message intended to induce people to join a religious movement, political party, or other cause or organization.

HFHI’s Mission Statement

Seeking to put God’s love into action, Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, communities and hope.