Support St. Jude and maybe win a dream house? That’s the Dream Home giveaway. The seventh dream home in the Charlotte, North Carolina area is currently underway, and City Electric Supply (CES) Waxhaw is proud to play a part. This is the first dream home in Waxhaw, but it’s not CES Waxhaw’s first time joining the mission. The branch has been involved for several years, providing 100 percent of the electrical materials for the St. Jude Dream Homes built in the area.
“We help just about every year, and because this year’s St. Jude Dream Home is being built right here in Waxhaw, it’s a little bit more special to all of us,” said Branch Manager Shawn Odom. “Knowing that you helped with a dream home is always humbling. Attending the events, hearing the St. Jude families tell their success stories and how communities like ours are truly making a difference in their lives — it’s always a special moment that reminds you why you help every single year.”
The way it works is that members of a community purchase tickets to enter the giveaway for their dream home, and all of the proceeds go toward helping St. Jude kids and families.
“We will sell 20,000 tickets this year at $100 apiece,” said Regional Managing Director of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Jessica Fisher. “The goal this year is to raise $2 million for our patients and their families to ensure they never receive a bill for treatment, travel, housing or food — so that all a family has to worry about is helping their child live. Once all tickets are reserved, we draw a winner and award the home to someone in the community who purchased a ticket.” And it looks like the turnout this year will be bigger than ever.
“Since we’ve started, it’s been our biggest fundraiser in the Charlotte area. This is only our seventh year, but when it’s all said and done, we’ll have raised over $9 million. Every year, more and more people get more and more excited,” said Fisher. “The money we raise truly helps a lot of families, but it starts in these communities. Without them, none of this would be possible.”
“We get to work with some of the best builders, amazing media partners, trade vendors and volunteers in the area. We get to see entire communities come together in support of the St. Jude mission,” Fisher said. “It’s a combination of all of these people in their different lines of work that are coming together for the same cause and building this home, which is more than just a house. There’s so much passion that is poured into it; it’s really a labor love every single year.”
Dream Home Builder Jeff Newton, who has built almost every Dream Home in the Charlotte area for the past six years, says the community involvement and donations allow them to build truly remarkable homes.
“Like City Electric Supply and all the volunteers who work with us to make this possible, the community involvement has been among the most satisfying parts. We rely almost entirely on donations, sponsors and volunteers, and every year we get the chance to build incredible dream homes,” he said. “You’d think that wouldn’t result in the best items or materials, but it actually has.”
St. Jude also gets a little help from kids in the community through a fundraiser. Elementary school students have a fundraiser for St. Jude through which they sell 2x4s to their community that will eventually help build the home. Once the first mission is complete, the students write messages on them for St. Jude families. This means that before the drywall is even installed, the home is filled with words of hope, strength and resilience.