A subdivision with rich history
Fox Valley Habitat has a mini-subdivision on Solfisburg Avenue in Aurora that is also known as Peter’s Place. We can thank the Colis Family for the namesake of this mini-subdivision.
Peter Colis founded Euclid Insurance Services, Inc. in 1952 and later acquired a bank with his family that was renamed Oxford Bank & Trust in 1987. He served as the CEO for Euclid until the early 1990’s when he became chairman. He also served as chairman of Oxford’s bank holding company. As a child in the Great Depression his father lost everything and became unable to afford their apartment. This unfortunately meant that Peter and his family had to move into a relative’s home, where Peter slept in the dining room due to lack of space.
Peter overcame the Great Depression, worked his way through high school, joined the Navy, went to college, graduated, and went on to start his successful business. His sons, John and George Colis, eventually became employed in the family businesses. George happened to hear a speech by Millard Fuller, the founder and former President of Habitat for Humanity International. He told his dad all about Habitat giving others a hand-up in life through home ownership and the sweat equity Habitat families put into building their homes and the homes of other Habitat families. As someone who spent his youth sleeping in a dining room, working his way up in the world, and eventually launching two successful businesses, Peter was sold on Habitat for Humanity. The Colis family began a partnership with Fox Valley Habitat by sponsoring some of the homes built. Peter passed away in 2012, but his legacy continues to live on through his four children, George, John, Leslie and Valerie. The family has continued the tradition of sponsoring Fox Valley Habitat homes in the amount of $150,000 per home. They have changed the lives of six families so far. By sponsoring these homes, they have given these families the ability to raise their children in a safe and secure atmosphere and to thrive and succeed in life.
Shortly after Peter Colis passed away, the Ceo of Fox Valley Habitat, Jeff Barrett, was asked by the city of Aurora to choose a name for the subdivision on Solfisburg Avenue. He decided to honor Peter Colis and his family and name it Peter’s Place. Fox Valley Habitat is very grateful for the generosity of the Colis family and look forward to many more years of partnering with them.
The Uwamahoro Family is one of the proud owners that received a home sponsored by Oxford & Euclid. Click here to read their amazing story.
John & George Colis
Habitat Hero Award Dinner
Future Faith Build homeowner, Carmen, and her daughters were the guests of honor at this years event.
The 2018 Habitat Hero Award Dinner was held at the Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel in Chicago in June. Carmen is the future homeowner of our Faith Build 2018 home. Carmen and her daughters were the guests of honor that evening. Along with Carmen and her daughters was her best friend, Rubi (2017 FVHFH Faith Build homeowner) and her daughters. Also in attendance was some of our Fox Valley Habitat staff and board members.
CBS Chicago's Irika Sargent was the Habitat Hero Award Dinner emcee. Hilti Corporation and Ed Wehmer, CEO of Wintrust Financial were also honored in recognition of their contributions and for partnering to support Habitat homeowners across Chicagoland.
Carmen is building a better life for her daughters – because every family deserves a foundation for the future.
You can find out more about Carmen and her journey that brought her to Fox Valley Habitat by watching her very moving video on our website. Follow this link to see the video.
Our volunteers Rock!
Volunteers from all over have been helping us this summer
We have had some amazing volunteers the past couple of months! They have battled cold, stifling hot, and wet, muddy weather, but that hasn't stopped any of them from coming out and giving it their all. We have our church groups for our Faith Build home and many groups that are from a wide variety of corporations. One group had volunteers from 10 different states as far as California!
There has been a ton of progress on both of the homes and we appreciate all of the hard work and dedication that goes into building them. We couldn't do it without all of you; thank you! Below are a few of those hard working volunteers. If you would like to join us as a volunteer, please register at: www.volunteerfvhabitat.com.
Building on the Story
Our first Board Build Event was a great success!
Building on the Story was the theme of the day for our first Board Build Event of the year. We had an amazing turn out, despite the sweltering heat!
Our guests were invited by our Fox Valley Habitat Board Members designed as an opportunity for our board and staff to help recruit friends and colleagues that are interested in helping us advance the mission of Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity.
Our guests had an opportunity to meet our Habitat families and also joined in to help build some interior walls for the home of the Maruffo family.
The day was built on strengthening our circle of friends, showing our passion for our mission, and building side by side with our FVHFH families. We truly enjoyed meeting everyone and we we look forward to building on our story with them in the furture.
If you would like to donate or find out how to be involved with Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity, please visit our website at: www.foxvalleyhabitat.org
We are having a Block Party!
K-Love will be helping us host our August 18th Block Party
Saturday, August 18th
8:00am - 4:00pm
1551 & 1553 Solfisburg Ave
Aurora, IL 60505
Please join us for this awesome mission event of music, food, testimonies, and fellowship
This community event is to help generate awareness to our Christian housing ministry. There will be area food vendors on site to purchase food, ice cream, fruit, and drinks. They will donate a portion of their sales back to Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity for our 2018 Faith Build. Special Edition 2018 Faith Build T-shirts and children’s Habitat books will be available for purchase. K-LOVE will be broadcasting music and testimonials live on the radio throughout the day. We will be laying sod and doing landscaping as well. The kids can enjoy a bouncy house, a giant slide, and other fun activities! This is a free event to bring the whole family for a day of fun!
You can RSVP for this event at our volunteer website. Follow this link to reserve your spot today!
House Dedication #58 & #61
March 3rd marked our 60th home dedication! The house was overflowing with family, friends, and volunteers that had worked on the home; as well as city and state representatives.
Lawella and her daughters started their journey with Fox Valley Habitat in January of 2015. Lawella needed to complete 300 sweat equity hours and she has more than surpassed that amount by working on her home along with also helping at other build sites. She is always willing to help and continues to volunteer her time when needed. She has definitely become one of the family around our office!
Lawella's home was a rehab that was part of the Building Future Initiatives Program with East Aurora High School. The purpose of this program is two-fold. First is to have high school students learn building trade skills on the construction sites with FVHH to keep them in school to graduation and to begin a career path for employable skills when they graduate. Second is to provide affordable housing to working low-income families. After graduation, students can further their skill development through Junior College courses or look at apprentice programs to prepare for their career. This project is crucial to helping students find their job interests to determine what they will do to support their own family after graduation and to aspire to home ownership. Please follow this link to read more about the program.
Lawella and her daughters have been settling into their beautiful new home and have added an adorable puppy to the family.
You can read more about Lawella's journey before finding FVHH on our website.
The dedication in April for Juan and Maria, and their daughters was a beautiful celebration! The morning started out with a dedication service at St. Rita of Cascia Church in Aurora, followed by a home blessing at their Spruce St. home. The family was joined by many family members and friends; as well as city and state representatives.
Their jouney started in January of 2015 and they have completed more than their 500 hours of sweat equity. The family has worked many extra hours along side other Habitat families. Anytime they are asked to help out at a build site, the warehouse, or clean a house before a dedication; they are there with smiles on and ready to work.
We wish you many happy years of making memories in your beautiful home!
Their home was mostly built through in-kind donations from the generosity of companies that support our mission. To learn more about our In-kind Home, please click here.