A Winnipeg metal recycler wants to pull off the ultimate home makeover — transforming cars into houses. The project to turn old cars into homes for Habitat for Humanity will help get hundreds of old cars off the road every year and crushed at urbanmine’s metal recycling facility in Winnipeg. The proceeds of the metal sales will go to Habitat for Humanity Winnipeg to help build more of their energy- efficient homes for families in need.
As the driving force behind the project to turn old cars into cash for Habitat, urbanmine President Mark Chisick says the Old Parts New Starts program can help lift families out of poverty.
“Owning a home is an impossible dream for many. But when families have the opportunity to own a home it changes lives for generations to come. And, we want to be part of that change,” says Mark Chisick whose company will pass through 100% of the donated value of the recycled cars to Winnipeg’s Habitat for Humanity.
Habitat then issues a charitable receipt for the value of the vehicle to the owner who donated the car. Depending on metal prices and the weight of the car that could amount to several hundred dollars or more per vehicle.
“The idea is to crush at least 1,000 cars a year for Habitat. Ideally, we hope Manitobans will recycle enough cars to build a Habitat house, in the first year of the program,” says Mark Chisick. The goal is that the Old Parts New Starts program will create a steady income stream for Habitat for years to come, he added.
For Sandy Hopkins, Habitat CEO, the Old Parts New Starts program is a win-win-win.
“When urbanmine first approached us with this idea we realized it could help reduce carbon emissions by getting old cars off the road and the proceeds could help build more of our energy-efficient homes. It’s a win for the environment, for Habitat families and allows a lot of people to turn their old cars into new starts for Habitat families,” says Hopkins
Since 1987, Habitat for Humanity Winnipeg (HFHW) has built 179 homes for low-income working families and is presently building Phase II of the “greenest” affordable housing development in Canada and the “greenest” housing development in Manitoba. The “green” Habitat homes are built to the same Power Smart Gold Standard and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification of the 12 previous Habitat homes. Home ownership affordability is offered through no down payment and interest free mortgages with monthly payments geared to family income rather than property value. The energy and water efficiency of all these homes not only makes them environmentally friendly but also more affordable by reducing the daily living costs for our low-income working families.
Urbanmine recycles electronics, scrap metal and other waste material at its facility at 72 Rothwell in South Winnipeg. Donors are assured their cars will be recycled responsibly.
—WINNIPEG, MANITOBA, JULY 12, 2010