Fundraising Begins to Rebuild First Four Homes in Malden

Posted on December 10, 2020

Western Anabaptist Mission Service Volunteers Commit Labor to Build Four Homes

Innovia Foundation, the community foundation for Eastern Washington and North Idaho, is announcing a campaign to raise $300,000 to rebuild four of the homes lost during the devastating September wildfires that destroyed the communities of Malden and Pine City.

The Western Anabaptist Mission Service in St. Ignatius, Montana is volunteering their labor to rebuild four homes lost in the fire. The Mission service, whose vision is to “reach out to people in need and be the hands for Jesus in today’s world,” has helped communities in Montana, Idaho and Washington rebuild from wildfires over the past several years, including the Carlton Complex Fire in Okanogan County.

“This is an incredible opportunity and will provide much-needed encouragement for the families,” said Scott Hokonson, Recovery Operations Director. “While we know it will take several years to rebuild, seeing new life begin to rise out of the ashes will foster hope throughout the Pine Creek region.”

Construction materials for each home will cost around $75,000. Volunteers can begin building in January once money has been raised. Volunteers will build a new home every three to four weeks.

“It will take a village to rebuild the communities of Malden and Pine City,” said Shelly O’Quinn, CEO, Innovia Foundation. “No matter the size of the donation, it will be through the generosity of individuals, churches and businesses across our state and region that every family displaced by the devastating wildfires can once again have a place to call home.”

Last week, our region responded with incredible generosity and adopted Malden and Pine City families to bring a bit of holiday cheer by providing Christmas dinner and presents for families who lost everything.

On September 7, the Babb Fire swept across Whitman County. An estimated 80% of homes in Malden and nearly 75% of homes in Pine City were lost. Approximately two-thirds of these families did not have insurance because their homes were deemed uninsurable. The Pine Creek area is the most economically depressed area in the county.

Innovia Foundation will work with the Long Term Recovery Committee and nonprofit housing partners to develop a zero interest loan program and assist families with the application process. As loans are repaid they will be reinvested in future community restoration projects. For more information, click here to contact our team or call (509) 624-2606.


Donate to the Pine Creek Fund

Frequently Asked Questions 

How will families be selected to receive a new home? 

This is a voluntary program. Families who wish to receive assistance to rebuild their homes will complete an application through the selected nonprofit housing provider. Priority will be given to uninsured or underinsured families who lived in and owned their own home. Additional selection criteria are being developed and will be available with the application. 

Who will be the nonprofit housing provider? 

Innovia Foundation and the Long-Term Recovery Committee are currently seeking proposals from several nonprofit housing organizations.   

If all the materials are donated and labor is donated, why are families being asked to take out a zero-interest mortgage? 

Donations received will be used to purchase materials needed to begin the construction of new homes in the Malden and Pine Creek Communities.   Selected families will receive a zerointerest loan to cover the cost of these materials only, not labor. The money that families pay back will be channeled into the construction of more homes for other families. 

This program, modeled in part, on the proven Habitat for Humanity and other housing programs, will allow for the continued reinvestment of dollars into the community to help more families impacted by devastating wildfires. 

Why are only four homes being built? 

This is just the beginning. The Western Anabaptist Mission Service has generously volunteered their labor to build four homes this winter. We will continue to help the community fundraise and partner with volunteer groups wanting to donate their time, talent and resources to rebuild the communities of Malden and Pine Creek. 

When will construction begin? 

Volunteers from the Western Anabaptist Mission Service are available to begin construction mid-January.  A home will be built every 3-4 weeks.