Brea Thomas started working on a Habitat for Humanity home site in April 2007, the first month she was eligible under Habitat rules. In a very short length of time, she realized that the organization would greatly benefit from additional participation from the community’s high school youth. After much planning and many meetings with executive directors, school administrators, faculty and students, The Covenant School Habitat for Humanity Club was officially approved in May 2007. Under the strong and steady guidance of Brea, this high school club, begun by the passion of a single student, has provided over 1,200 volunteer hours to the Habitat for Humanity of Greater Charlottesville organization. Since arriving on that Habitat job site in April of 2007, Brea has personally invested well over 250 volunteer hours.
Brea has become a leader, planner, fundraiser and public relations specialist! Her school’s Habitat for Humanity Club works together to raise money, awareness and manpower for the house it has chosen to sponsor. Her creative fundraising ideas, all themed around construction, have included Nickels for Nails—collecting coins to match the 150 lb. weight in nails used in a single Habitat House, Tix4Bricks—a website where a silent auction will be held for tickets to various concerts at the local arena, the design and sale of T-shirts to acknowledge World Habitat Day, and the ever-popular “Build a Sundae” offered during the lunch hour at school.
Charlottesville’s Habitat for Humanity recently purchased the 100-acre Southwood Mobile Home Park and it will be developed in partnership with local developers as a high-density, mixed-income community with hundreds of homes. To supplement this plan, Brea's Habitat for Humanity club applied for and received a $7,000 grant from State Farm Insurance to begin a special project known as “The Garden at Southwood.”
Brea has fervently embraced her partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Greater Charlottesville and appears poised to encourage other young people to do the same. Her commitment to Habitat for Humanity has been recognized by appointing Brea to a position on the board of Youth United, a committee that is constantly working to raise awareness and support for the Habitat cause among the youth of our community. As a campus chapter leader, Brea will be attending the upcoming Youth Leadership Conference in St. Louis that celebrates the important contributions youth have made to Habitat’s mission.
As a campus chapter leader, Brea attended the Habitat for Humanity Youth Leadership Conference in St. Louis that celebrated the important contributions youth have made to Habitat's mission.
Brea’s desire to participate in the Habitat program positively influences her fellow students at The Covenant School. She brings a positive attitude to her tasks, whether lifting heavy boards up two flights of steps, assisting older volunteers, or devoting serious effort to fundraising. The personal determination she exhibits is well beyond the expectation of most 17-year-old girls. She is an inspiration to all who know her!