If You Had a Hammer, What Would You Do?
Do you know the song “If I Had a Hammer” By Peter, Paul and Mary? It’s about the good you can do, the positive changes you can make in people’s lives using the simple tools we all possess. If you had a hammer, you could help build or repair homes in your own local community. You could travel to places like Louisiana, Missouri, Vermont, or West Virginia to help restore homes that were destroyed by hurricane, tornado, or flood, or build new homes for those who just need a hand up. If you had a hammer, you could do incredibly good things for people all over the world.
Opportunities For Adults and Youth to Use Their Hammers
DreamBuilders is a group of local religious organizations that have joined to lead construction-based mission projects locally, nationally, and internationally. Christ Church joined the core group in 2008; members of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church started DreamBuilders in 2000. Christ Church has two members that serve on the DreamBuilders leadership team, which is responsible for planning and executing the missions each year, coordinating fundraisers and doing all the background work needed to keep the group running. DreamBuilders partners with organizations such as Almost Heaven Habitat for Humanity, St. Bernard Project and Rebuild Joplin for mission projects.
Locally, DreamBuilders supports The ARC of Howard County, which provides housing to adults with disabilities. Many properties are in need of regular upkeep and our volunteers do the work necessary, from painting and other simple jobs to complete home renovations. DreamBuilders is also supporting a long-term project to repair a row house damaged by fire in the Remington neighborhood, Baltimore City.
Then over the summer we pack our hammers, hard hats, and nail aprons and head out on DreamBuilders weeklong mission trips! The days consist of challenging but rewarding work, learning new skills, interacting as a team, helping with meals, and of course having fun with friends new and old! Our efforts are rewarded when we see our accomplishments at the end of the week, but even more rewarding is our time with the family and the community.
Fundraising is an important component for DreamBuilders. Not only do we provide labor, but we also provide financial backing for our projects. For example, we support Habitat for Humanity “blitz builds” at a cost of $40,000 per house. Christ Church participates in a variety of fundraisers throughout the year to raise money for project materials and for scholarships to assist Christ Church members with mission trip fees. The largest DreamBuilders fundraiser is the Annual Spaghetti Dinner and Silent Auction, held early each spring.
2013-2014 Mission Schedule
- Saturday October 5, 8:30am-4:30pm: Workday at Remington House
- May 18-24, 2014: College-age/adult mission trip to New Orleans
- June 22-28, 2014: Concurrent trips to West Virginia (blitz build with Habitat for Humanity) and New York (Hurricane Sandy recovery)
- July 27-August 7, 2014: Trip to West Virginia (to finish house started in June, if possible)
For more information about DreamBuilders, including the latest project schedule and registration forms, see the DreamBuilders homepage.