November 6, 2019

Branded Group Partners with Habitat for Humanity to Build Playhouse

This article was written by Branded Group Marketing Coordinator Melissa Perez and originally published on LinkedIn

Do you remember playing make believe as a child? Any and all professions were up for grabs – astronaut, sailor, firefighter, baker – the possibilities were truly endless. Those moments of playtime, whether spent in your room, at recess, or the park helped many children ponder the possibilities of a future career and what they wanted to be when they grew up.

Recently, several Branded Group team members revisited that long-ago activity by participating in the Building Tomorrow 2019 contest, hosted by Habitat for Humanity of Orange County. The goal of this event, which brought together community organizations, was to build playhouses for local children. Playhouses that give children their opportunity to play make believe.

Branded Group has participated in over ten build days with Habitat for Humanity with their Orange County and Suffolk County chapters. This build day was certainly different. Instead of following the blueprints and pre-selected paint schemes, our team collectively developed their design.

Long before the first nail was pounded, the playhouse design process was put into action. The #BeBetter team worked together to plan a dream playhouse that would inspire creativity and play. Once the design plans were set and the color scheme was selected, the team eagerly awaited the morning of the build day.

Weeks later, on a crisp fall morning, eight Branded Group team members gathered at the City National Grove of Anaheim, California. They were on a mission to take their playhouse from the design page to the pavement in five hours!

When we arrived at the City National Grove of Anaheim, the pieces of the playhouse that needed to be assembled, paint, and supplies awaited us. Once the walls were boarded up and the base of the playhouse was constructed, it was time to paint and create. Covered in paint and beaming with pride, the #BeBetter team admired their vibrant garden playhouse, which was made complete with gardening tools and supplies that encourage imagination and play.

“My favorite part of this event was seeing my team’s creativity,” Megan Ruiz, Branded Group Senior Facilities Coordinator said. “We put all of our ideas together and created a beautiful playhouse.”

Did you now that playhouses can significantly bolster imagination in a child? Imagination is critical for learning and development.

As Fred Rogers said, “for children play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood.”

A playhouse provides a creative alternative to screen time and gets them outside and active. Research also shows that children who engage in imaginative make-believe play develop quicker intellectually.

Some other benefits of creative play include:

  1. Better sleep,
  2. Improved social skills, and,
  3. Broader world view.

The #BeBetter team enjoyed volunteering at this event for several reasons. In addition to creating a space for imagination for local children, they were simultaneously supporting Habitat for Humanity’s mission of giving everyone a decent place to call home.

“It was definitely a humbling experience to know that so many organizations are willing to take time out of their weekend to help those who are less fortunate,” Elaine Husein, Branded Group Facilities Coordinator said. “It is always a pleasure when you are surrounded by a great community who believes in ‘being better.’”

All playhouses were auctioned to the highest bidders and donated to families and other non-profit organizations in the Orange County community.

The day was filled with hard work, creativity, and learning; skills the Branded Group team must have picked up during playtime in their childhood.

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