Contributed by Sarah Collins
The Mat-Su Borough has over 102,000 residents living across the Valley. Our communities are cohesive and engaged, and non-profits like the Mat-Su Home Builders Association (MSHBA) value the opportunity to support friends and neighbors in the Mat-Su when in need.
With thanks to Kathy Mitchell of Country Legends 100.9 FM, John Denny of Spurs Bar and Grill (4 Corners) and Spenard Builders Supply, we helped raise funds for 2016 Su-Valley High School student, Garrett Simper. Garrett was diagnosed with Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma. This disease is aggressive and painful, affecting the soft tissue (muscles) and connective tissues like tendons, cartilage and bones. When his treatment was no longer working, Garrett decided on what he’d most like to do with his remaining time: Build a cabin with his father.
Stories like Garrett’s may be rare, but they happen and they are real, and MSHBA’s members’ hearts ache at his suffering, recognizing that our own family members might go through the same difficult journey.
Another event MSHBA just held was its 2017 Annual Golf Tournament. Proceeds from this event don’t just go to our organization for administration and operating costs, but also to numerous charities we support, from veterans’ groups to health and social services advocacies. The number of people homeless, addicted, abused and suffering in the Valley hasn’t slowed and isn’t rare. Our members want to help slow the momentum of afflictions suffered in our neighborhoods.
Giving back really matters to us and we take ownership in the fact our members and their families are part of a larger community. Our 130+ homebuilding member businesses are a critical part of the productive commerce function of the state, as much as we are shoppers, patrons, customers, patients and voters just like everyone else. Our members live across the Borough just like you.
From Palmer to Talkeetna, Willow to Wasilla, Big Lake and Houston and Meadow Lakes to KGB and Sutton, the Mat-Su Home Builders Association wants to make a difference. We donate, contribute and support many Valley communities because we care.
We hope you will personally support community advocacies too. Particularly if you’re in a trade association for your profession, encourage your membership to raise donations for a worthy cause. Publicize the effort and event, and make sure everyone recognizes its importance.
Altruism and community support make a big difference and inspires charity. Supporting others and offering a helping hand is a bedrock principle upon which our nation was founded upon. Just ask Garrett Simper. He’s a patriot, brave and hardworking, and he’s building a cabin with his father right now thanks to our community.
Thank you again to everyone who has helped support Garrett’s dream. Special thanks to Kathy Mitchell who spearheaded the fundraising event and brought the request to our organization – with contagious love in her heart and dedication to help in every way possible.
To contribute to Garrett Simper’s project, contact Spenard Builders Supply in Wasilla, with reference to account #20-148194.
To donate to the MSHBA go online to www.matsuhomebuilders.com.
Sarah Collins is the executive director of the Mat-Su Home Builders Association (MSHBA).