Editor’s Note: Community Corps is an annual recognition program for Gap Inc. employee volunteers. Since 2000, 25 employees from all over the world come together to build homes with Habitat for Humanity. Dionne Robertson is a BRFS Western Region Community Leader, actively involved in supporting Habitat for Humanity, San Marcos, TX. This is her Community Corps story.
Being part of a Habitat build is always emotional for me, but this experience took it to a whole new level.
During our 2013 Community Corps trip, we helped rebuild in New Jersey after Hurricane Sandy, one of the deadliest and most destructive hurricanes in U.S. history. We arrived about one year after the storm, and there were no visible signs of destruction until we walked inside of the house we were working on, owned by an elderly couple. They had stayed in their home, reluctant to leave, living with mold on the furniture and in the carpet. We put a whole new floor in, and re-roofed the back part of the house.
Another homeowner told me that during the storm, people were literally running in front of rushing water, trying to get home to close their windows and doors. To me, that was such a powerful visual.
And another homeowner would meet me for lunch breaks in her backyard with her dog every day, and had such a positive outlook. The residents as a whole were so appreciative and supportive, genuinely happy to see that people still cared enough to help, even after a year had passed. Some mornings, neighbors would cheer for us from their porches as we walked to the worksite. I remember one man yelling, "We love you, Gap! Thanks for being here to help!"
I enjoy working for Gap because I am encouraged to be myself and follow my passion. Gap Inc. continues to raise the bar when it comes to doing more for communities, social responsibility and doing what’s right for its employees. I am proud to work for a company that is always on the cutting edge and continues to expand and grow.
This year, another team will come together for a Habitat build in Guatemala. If you are a Gap Inc. employee interested in going, I strongly encourage you to apply. I promise, it will change your life.
To apply for Community Corps or to nominate a Gap Inc. employee, go to bewhatspossible.com.