Habitat for Humanity Halton-Mississauga doesn’t just offer opportunities to volunteer on-site or in the ReStore, we also have fulfilling positions in the office. These people help our organization behind the scenes by using whatever creative or technical skill they have to help drive our mission of providing safe, affordable homes to families and individuals in our community.
Abe Cipriano is one of our valued volunteers here in the communications department and this week we would like to recognize him for his hard work and commitment to our mission.
After immigrating to Canada from the Philippines in August 2018, Abe started volunteering in the Halton-Mississauga ReStore, working in customer service, merchandising and pricing. But when an opportunity arose to volunteer in communications, Abe was quick to apply.
“I’ve been an executive in my original country, the Philippines, so I’ve had roles there that have taken me from sales to marketing, to leadership positions,” he said. “The ReStore is fulfilling itself, but the offer of doing something in communications is at least something that’s up my background.”
From there, Abe took off. His first and favourite project was to create a marketing and brand guide for the Halton-Mississauga affiliate. His work was originally adapted from Habitat Canada and reformatted to suit our organization’s needs.
“I organize the materials we’ve done – like logos, creative materials, things we’ve done in communications and marketing – and organize them in a way that can easily be referred to by communications people,” he said. “This is so that they can easily understand the brand of Habitat.”
His work has helped shape our communications across the affiliate and helps everyone stay on brand. As for why here’s here, Abe is attracted to our organization’s mission.
“What I love about Habitat is that it’s providing affordable shelter to those who need it. I think it’s a great mission.”
Abe’s work at Habitat is an example of how the opportunities to help are endless. Lending a hand on-site isn’t the only way. You can write, design and use your creative skills, and your help is just as valued.
When I asked Abe where he thinks the connection lies between communication and our mission, his response reminded me of why our work is so valuable.
“We need donors and corporate partners, whether they’re donating their time, inventory, or money for us to be able to help other people. Communication plays a key role because we craft the message,” he said. “We try to reach the audience in whatever relevant medium possible, be it social media, blog posts, advertising, stores and our very own people. Communication is so valuable. Whatever small role I can do to get the message out is fulfilling for me.”
Throughout all his work at Habitat, Abe reflects on why he keeps coming back.
“It’s a great environment to learn,” he said. “The people I’ve met are supportive, they’re very nice, they give you guidance. It’s a place where you can have a degree of fun, but at the same time – and more importantly – give back.”
One reason we write volunteer spotlights is so that our readers can get to know the people behind the scenes at Habitat. Abe is particularly special to our team because of his positivity and willingness to help out each time he comes in for a shift.
“It helps me in terms of giving back. I’ve gotten some measure of blessings in life,” he said. “Good karma is never a bad thing to learn. Being here is also helping me gain experience in getting to know how it is in the office workplace.”
We couldn’t be more grateful to have you a part of the team, Abe. Thank you for your hard work and passion coming into the office every week. We are looking forward to working on many more projects with you in the future.