In late 2018, Brad met for lunch with Pastor AJ Hardin and James Arnold from Living Word of Faith to discuss the problem of homelessness among college students in Polk County. These students were trying to pursue higher education, but several of the men were unable to find affordable housing. Many were living in their cars, on benches, or on friend’s couches, since area shelters do not offer options for men.
Hardin and Arnold offered their church’s parsonage, which had been vacant for several years, and the community Men’s Group began the work by gutting the house and putting a new roof on. When the local Rotary club presidents met, they embraced the project and the renovation went into full swing. Area businesses, individuals, and Rotarians from at least eight different clubs invested their time, energy and resources into this "Scholarship House."
Heart for Winter Haven is proud grant partners with the George W. Jenkins Fund within the GiveWell Community Foundation. Together with GiveWell and the partner organizations above, the renovated home near Polk State's Winter Haven campus is now complete. The home has four bedrooms, including one for the house manager, and can accomodate up to eight students.
You can experience the journey of the home HERE:
We would like to thank the following organizations and businesses (and more!) for helping make this dream a reality:
- Rotary on the Ridge
- Bartow Rotary Club
- Rotary Club of Winter Haven
- Rotary Club of Lakeland North
- Rotary Club of Auburndale
- Rotary Club of Lakeland South
- Lake Wales Breakfast Rotary
- Rotary Club of Lakeland Christina
- DOC Electric
- Lowe's Home Improvement
- Winter Haven Police Department
- Gator Pressure Cleaning & Custom Painting, Inc.
- Paradise Lawn Care of Central Florida
- High View Tree Service
- Walmart of Winter Haven
- Brock Industrial Electric
- Badcock Home Furniture & More of Winter Haven
- MAC Plumbing of Central Florida
- Wheat Painting
- Horne Construction
- RightWay Landscape Pros & Tree Service LLC
- Hartley Farms
- S&W Supply, Inc.
- The Flying Locksmiths
- Golden Marble & Granite
- Big House Properties
Many individuals also donated funds to the project, and we are so grateful for their support, prayers and encouragement.
We are still in the process of raising funds to cover all related expenses. To donate towards the Scholarship House, please visit www.heart4wh.org/donate, or send a gift via mail to:
Heart for Winter Haven
Attn: Scholarship House
P.O. Box 2383
Winter Haven, FL 33883
For more information about the Scholarship House project, call 863-291-6270 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.