Partnership between IUPAT DC 53, WV Job Corps, and Habitat for Humanity of Kanawha & Putnam: A Win-Win for Community and Learning!

The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) DC 53, West Virginia Job Corps, and Habitat for Humanity of Kanawha & Putnam have joined forces to make an impact in their community.

This partnership brings students from Job Corps together with Habitat for Humanity volunteers to build affordable housing for families in need.

The initiative was sparked when WV Job Corps instructor Jeremy Everson was searching for nonprofit organizations to collaborate with and stumbled upon a Habitat for Humanity project at North Hills Drive.

After a meeting, the project was set in motion.

“It’s a learning experience for students to work on the insides of actual houses where someone is going to live. We are ensuring they do a good job and make it look great.” Everson said.

The students from WV Job Corps joined the construction efforts, bringing their skills to gain real-world experience and earn workplace learning hours that will benefit their future careers.

The project focused on two adjacent houses, with Habitat for Humanity providing the materials, and IUPAT DC 53 and Job Corps members contributing their labor and tools.

Working under the guidance of Habitat for Humanity volunteers and IUPAT DC 53 members, the students completed exterior tasks such as painting and carpentry.

Habitat for Humanity has always emphasized community involvement, and the collaboration with Job Corps aligns perfectly with this idea. Volunteers from both Job Corps and Habitat for Humanity work side by side, having collective responsibility for the project.

Looking to the future, both parties hope to strengthen their relationship and take on more projects together.

“I would love to see a nice steady relationship. We know here in West Virginia, particularly in Kanawha and Putnam counties, that we need talented labor in the construction fields, including painting, electricians, plumbers, HVAC, and carpenters,” said Andrew Blackwood, Habitat for Humanity of Kanawha & Putnam’s Executive Director. “We need more people employed in those areas, and as we have more people employed. It will help provide more affordable housing to our community.”

With a successful project completed and a budding partnership between IUPAT DC 53, WV Job Corps, and Habitat for Humanity of Kanawha & Putnam, the future looks promising for both the students and the community they serve!