A Brush With Kindness

Our mission statement compels us to make safe decent shelter a matter of conscience and action for everyone in Western Lake Superior. That's a tall task!  There are thousands of families living in poverty housing in the Twin Ports alone.  How can we serve the over 300 very-low income elderly that own their home but are unable to perform the upkeep necessary to gracefully age in place?

A Brush With Kindness matches mostly elderly very low-income homeowners in need of exterior repairs with service groups, businesses, churches, and community clubs looking for opportunities to make a difference in their community. They sponsor the project and provide volunteers, Habitat for Humanity provides experienced construction coordination to oversee the project, purchase materials, pull permits and put the pieces in place for a successful workday. Repairs range from much needed yard clean up and landscaping to building access ramps. Most projects are completed in a single Saturday and allow the homeowner to enjoy safe, decent shelter for years to come. 

A Brush With Kindness Quick Facts

  • A Brush With Kindness is a repair ministry that fulfills Habitat for Humanity's mission of ensuring that all God's people have a simple decent place to call home.
  • Qualified applicants must own their home, which must serve as their primary residence.
  • Qualified applicants fall under the same income requirements as Habitat homebuyers (under 50% of Area Median Income - see table below). Applications are evaluated based on need, emphasis will be placed on assisting households with annual income under 30% of Area Median Income.
  • Qualified applicants must not be able to pay for improvements through other means and are expected to work alongside volunteers as they are able. Able-bodied individuals living in the home must play an active role in completing repairs.
  • A lien may be attached to the property if repairs exceed $3,000 in estimated value.
  • Projects are generally limited in scope to exterior maintenance work that can be completed in a single day, typically Saturday.
  • Church, school, and service groups may sponsor an ABWK project by raising the money to cover material costs and providing volunteers. Habitat for Humanity provides tools, technical support and supervision.
  • A Brush With Kindness helps homeowners with minor repairs, painting, and other maintenance. This typically includes fixing broken doors, loose siding, rotting soffits and fascia, peeling paint and overgrown landscaping.


Qualifying income minimums and maximums are determined by family size and are below 50% of the area median income. These guidelines are adjusted each year and are based on numbers defined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). These figures include all forms of income: employment, public assistance of cash and food stamps, child support, alimony, etc.

Number in Family Maximum Income 2014
1 $22,550
2 $25,750
3 $28,950
4 $32,150
5 $34,750
6 $37,300
7 $39,900
8 $42,450


You must own your home and have valid Homeowner's Insurance in order to be considered for this program.

To apply for A Brush With Kindness, download an application and mail it to:

Western Lake Superior Habitat for Humanity
P.O. Box 1073
Superior, WI 54880

Application Deadline for Projects to be completed in 2015 is March 31, 2015.  Please allow 6-8 weeks for processing.