Be A Helping Hand Foundation
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615-227-6000
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827 West McKennie Avenue
Nashville, TN 37206
Organization Details

Statements

Mission

OUR MISSION
Empower families and build strong communities by providing safe, affordable housing, person-centered support, and green initiatives.

Background

How it all began
Be a Helping Hand (BHH) was founded in 2001 originally as a nonprofit training program designed to provide education in the building trades for Nashville's underrepresented communities. We trained over 500 students in electrical, plumbing, HVAC, and carpentry. Our students were given the skills to become certified journeymen/women and were able to find opportunity and gainful employment in their communities as a result.

A new vision
In 2006, as a response to the looming deficit of high-quality affordable housing in Nashville, BHH turned its attention from being a training program to a 501(c)(3) nonprofit with the mission to empower families and build strong communities by providing safe, affordable housing, person-centered support, and green initiatives.

As a Community Housing Development Organization (CHDO), our work is mindful of the increasing disparities in housing along economic lines. We are working to ensure that the housing needs of our community members are met and opportunity is available to all. We provide individuals and families in North Nashville and the surrounding Metro areas with access to affordable housing that is sustainable, well-built, safe, comfortable, and clean. Our affordable housing program and person-centered support provides the strong foundation needed for underrepresented families to sustain a life of health, opportunity, and pride. Our program empowers Nashvillians at risk of displacement by gentrification to afford to stay and live in their own community, in a home that provides the foundation to build generational wealth, ensuring opportunity for all of our neighbors.

Who we serve:
Female Heads of Household
Large Families
Survivors and Victims of Domestic Violence
Families Enrolled in the Strong Babies Project
Elderly
People with Disabilities
Veterans

Toward a bright future

We are proud of the work we've done to help strengthen our local communities through affordable housing. We have built or restored more than forty-five affordable homes in North Nashville and the surrounding Metro areas utilizing funding from federal, state, and local agencies, as well as individual donors. Our goal is to continue empowering families, building strong communities, and creating a healthy environment for Nashville in order to be the positive change we want to see in the world.

Impact

We trained over 500 students in electrical, plumbing, HVAC, and carpentry. Our students were given the skills to become certified journeymen/women and were able to find gainful employment in their communities as a result.

We have helped our communities gain prosperity through affordable housing, education, person-centered, and green programs.
We are proud to have built or rehabilitated more than 45 homes in North Nashville and the surrounding metro areas utilizing funding from federal, state, and local agencies, as well as individual donors.

Our Progress

2008-2009

1. In 2008, thirty-two students were trained and graduated from our training program and later found gainful employment.
2. MDHA Community Housing Development Organization re-certification.
3. $92,500 CHDO, Community Housing Development Organization, Award from MDHA.
4. Acquired three properties: two for affordable homeownership, and one for affordable home rental.

2010-2011

1. Forty-one students were trained and then graduated from our training program and later found gainful employment.
2. Re-certified -MDHA CHDO Program.
3. Awarded $750,000 from NSPII (Neighborhood Stabilization Plan).
4. Purchased and rehabbed twelve foreclosed or abandoned homes.
5. Awarded $50,000 from Fifth Third Bank CRA Enterprise Investment Fund.

2011-2012

1. Completed OMB A-133 Audit.
2. Thirty-nine students graduated from our training program and later found gainful employment.
3. Awarded $516,704 to provide six affordable homes to serve low-income families.

2012-2013

1. MDHA Community Housing Development Organization re-certification.
2. Awarded THDA Housing Trust Fund funding of $121,060 and MDHA funding of $94,349 for acquisition and construction of three housing units to serve very low and low-income families at 50% & 60% AMI.

2013-2014

1. MDHA Community Housing Development Organization re-certification.
2. Awarded THDA funding of $405,511, Barnes Affordable Housing Fund, and HOME funding of $539,478 for construction of eight housing units to serve large families with very low-income and disabilities.

2014-2015

1. Constructed eight housing units - six affordable for home rentals and two for affordable homeownership.
2. Awards for the six units from Barnes, MDHA & THDA totaling $944,989.42.

2015-2016

1. Constructed and sold four single-family affordable homes in The Woods at Monticello.
2. Completed OMB A-133 Audit.

2016-2018

1. MDHA Community Housing Development Organization re-certification.
2. Completed OMB A-133 Audit.
3. Constructed four affordable home rentals.
4. Awards for four units from Barnes & MDHA totaling $824,047.

2018-2019

1. MDHA Community Housing Development Organization re-certification.
3. Constructing 5 housing affordable home rentals.
2. Awards for three units from Barnes & MDHA totaling $750,479.

2019-April 2020

1. We have received $143,345 for the construction of three units from the Barnes Fund.
2. We have a pending MDHA grant in the amount of $375,000 for the construction of 2 units.
3. We launched our Spreading the Wealth of Nature program and planted native trees on all of our affordable housing properties.
4. We partnered with Plenty International's Kids To The Country program to offer nature & science-based learning to our tenants.
5. We received and put to work a grant from Plenty International for the rebuilding of our homes that were damaged in the March 2020 tornado.

2021
1. Planted more trees, native gardens, and rain gardens.
2. Are working on planting pollinator gardens for our tenants.

Goals:
1. Provide more housing for families at 60% AMI ( low- income), large families, and women survivors/victims of domestic violence.
2. Acquire funding to increase staffing to help facilitate person-centered programs, green programs, and affordable housing program

Needs

Be a Helping Hand continues an ongoing effort to acquire funding to increase staffing to help facilitate advocacy programs, person-centered programs, green programs, and of course affordable housing. We need large rocks donated for our pollinator gardens and volunteers to help plant the gardens in mid January of 2022.

CEO Statement

As Executive Director of Be a Helping Hand, I believe it is important that the organization maintain a well-balanced structure to ensure that all phases of the organization reflect our ongoing commitment to our vision, mission, and values. Having positive role models is very important in our urban communities, which is why I feel a personal responsibility to assist in addressing the concerns of my community. It gives me great pleasure to be able to help a family purchase or rent a home built by our organization that is affordable. The generosity and goodwill of people who care about the welfare of others are what make life so fulfilling. Winston Churchill once said, "We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give." Giving to Be a Helping Hand is really a partnership in giving with a friend you can trust. Our donors can feel confident that their donations are going to an honest organization that will work hard to put their money to work building foundations for a safe and healthy future for our communities in Nashville.

Sincerely,
Mark A. Wright

Board Chair Statement

Anita Holmes
Board Chair
Anita has worked at Vanderbilt University in the Office of Student Financial Aid & Scholarships since 1997. She also serves as the Faculty Advisor to the Vanderbilt Voices of Praise, a student-run organization, since 1998. She has a B.S (1983) in Sociology and Social Work from Trinity College in Hartford, CT. She belongs to Hicks Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church where she serves as the Administrative Assistant. She provides volunteer counseling and social enhancement activities for young people, particularly young women. Anita's late husband, Kelly Holmes, was the Founder of Be a Helping Hand Foundation. His love and passion for the programs is honored and shared by Anita.


Service Categories

Primary Category: Housing, Shelter  - Housing Development, Construction & Management 
Secondary Category: Human Services  - Family Services 
Tertiary Category: Environment  - Environment NEC 

Areas Served

North Nashville and surrounding metropolitan areas.

TN - Davidson