Habitat for Humanity Victoria brings together volunteers and community partners to break the cycle of poverty through home ownership.

?Habitat for Humanity” explains Chief Executive Officer of the Victoria branch Yolanda Meijer, “is a charity that builds homes, and then we sell them to low-income families, because we believe that everyone should have a safe, affordable, and decent place to live.?

But that mission takes money. Donations to, and purchases from Habitat Victoria’s ReStores are a huge help, but fundraisers are important too.

Along with their premier fundraising event Gingerbread Showcase, Habitat Victoria has also raised money for the past few years by challenging artists to transform a chair with the “Take a Seat” fundraiser.

?This year,” says Meijer, “we thought ‘well, let’s tap into some of that creativity we’ve seen, and open it up and allow the artists to choose whatever they wanted.’ ?

Thirty-one artists were invited to create a piece of art, using materials found at ReStores, for this spring’s fundraiser: ReFind Art.

One of those artists is Jesika Edison.

?I found the ladder” says Edison, “and wasn’t sure quite what I wanted to do with it yet, and then found other pieces to go with it…like this [wooden] box, and the lid to the box, and the shelf, and the lamp, which really spoke to me because it had a lot of character to it.  And I just kind of had an idea of doing an interesting floor lamp.?

Edison enjoys using her talents and artistic vision to give back.

?I’ve been a volunteer artist for the ReStore for a few years now, and I really enjoy doing it” says Edison. “It’s a great way to be creative, and it’s fun, and you get to help support Habitat.?

Meijer is grateful to artists like Edison who volunteer their time and their talents.

?We cannot say enough how much we appreciate the artists who volunteer an incredible amount of time, and all of their creativity to produce these works of art for our charity,” said Meijer.

“We’ve raised collectively, I think, about $20,000 to $25,000 dollars with the two previous ‘Take a Seat’ [fundraisers.] This year we’re hoping that we’ll match that with the art that we have around us today? adds Meijer.

You can support Habitat for Humanity Victoria’s ReFind Art by making a donation to vote for your favorite artwork, which will be displayed from Tuesday May 29 until Sunday June 10 at Victoria’s Bay Centre.  Or you can put in a bid and perhaps become the proud owner of one of the beautiful pieces on display.

Veronica Cooper