Well done, Joplin Area Habitat for Humanity. Well done, Salvation Army.
By teaming up, the two organizations have been able to build 21 homes for Joplin families since the 2011 tornado.
They broke ground Monday on yet another home, this one in the 2400 block of South Pennsylvania Avenue.
The build is a milestone of sorts, being the last home to go up using part of nearly $2.5 million in donated funds the Salvation Army collected after the tornado.
Some of that money also has been used to help build public and private shelters in the Joplin area as well as pay for dozens of smaller repair and renovation projects through Habitat’s “A Brush with Kindness” program.
The Salvation Army received nearly $6.5 million in donations after the tornado, and Maj. Phillip Aho, general secretary of the Salvation Army’s Midland Division, told the Globe that with this effort, his organization will have spent about $8.3 million in the area, including an initial $2.5 million given in emergency disaster relief just after the tornado.
“So we have made good on what the public has given — and more,” he said.
For its part, Joplin Area Habitat for Humanity and its partners have built 134 homes in Joplin since that storm.
“It’s not often you see two organizations come together like this,” said Scott Clayton, executive director of Joplin Area Habitat for Humanity.
That’s worth another amen.
Both organizations have demonstrated a long-term commitment to Joplin that serves as an example for all of us.
And speaking of example, we’d be remiss if we didn’t take a second to praise former President Jimmy Carter.
Carter and his wife have been longtime supporters of Habitat, and despite a fall last weekend at his home in Georgia that resulted in 14 stitches, he showed up in Tennessee to rally volunteers ahead of yet another Habitat build, and then pitched in to help.
Carter, by the way, is 95 years old.
It forces us to ask ourselves: If he can do it, what’s stopping the rest of us?