Lowe’s invests in Charlotte affordable housing complex for people with HIV, disabilities

A safe and affordable place to live is important for anyone’s quality of life.

When you are living with HIV, having a place to call home is also an essential part of taking care of your overall health.

In Charlotte, The Havens provides access to safe and affordable housing for people experiencing homelessness who are living with HIV or other disabilities.

With no major renovations since it was built in 1994, The Havens has needed some renovations to its facilities.

A surprise visit from Lowe’s was a welcome surprise for residents when The Havens was awarded $250,000 in grants and gift cards to renovate the 25-unit complex.

Based in the greater Charlotte region, Lowe’s committed to making a difference in its hometown through grants and partnerships with local organizations.

“We’re just beyond blessed and excited to be able to partner with Lowe’s and to really be able to help the residents here at The Havens,” said Nathan Smith, vice president of philanthropy for RAIN.

RAIN empowers persons living with HIV and those at risk to be healthy and stigma-free.

Recently, The Havens and RAIN developed a partnership that will keep these affordable housing units available in the community.

With an increase in higher income wage earners, higher end housing stock is growing, and the number of affordable units is declining.

Charlotte’s affordable housing supply is dwindling, having lost 28,000 units in the last five to eight years.

“The property has been around for nearly 30 years,” Smith said. “(The Havens) has always been about offering a safe, comfortable living environment.”

The Lowe’s Foundation $200,000 grant combined with $50,000 from Lowe’s will set the stage for a number of improvements at the property.

The priority projects will benefit long-term tenants as well as new individuals and families.

The largest projects include renovating kitchens and bathrooms, installing new front doors and overhauling the community rooms.

“This will make a big impact not only for the units but for the community centers,” Smith said.

The Havens remains an affordable housing complex to help address a critical community need for public health and the health of those who live in poverty.

The housing is for individuals and families that are very low income, which is defined as at or below 50% of the local area median income.

“We want to make sure we have safe and affordable housing,” said Dave Denton, chief financial officer for Lowe’s. “We’re excited about it and pleased to be here. I think everybody makes this come to life and really supports our community.”

Lowe’s focus areas include creating safe, affordable housing, investing in skill trade experts and working with technology, military and community development organizations.

If you have an inspiring story to share, email Kevin Campbell, WSOC-TV/WAXN-TV/Telemundo Charlotte public affairs manager, at Kevin.Campbell@wsoctv.com.