Craft brewers provide funds, elbow grease to build family a home


AUSTIN (KXAN) — At least 19 local craft breweries are raising money and encouraging employees to volunteer to build a home through Austin Habitat for Humanity for a family in need.

A Monday golf tournament at Balcones Country Club aimed to raise $15,000 for the cause, helping design and build what the organization is calling “the House That Beer Built.” 

Monday’s fundraiser, organized by Cate Black Photography, brought together builders, designers, architects and others in building trades to donate. This is the second year for the event, and a major increase in funding goals from the $4,000 raised last year.

Black said Tuesday they were very close to hitting this year’s fundraising goal.

The House That Beer Built is now in its third iteration in Austin, and more brewers are involved this year than ever before. The house they’re building will go to the Suarez family, Lucila and her 9-year-old son Javier. Currently, the two of them are sharing a room in a house with three other members of their extended family, and the house will help provide a more stable future.

“It changes the life of a homeowner,” Austin Habitat CEO Phyllis Snodgrass said. “It’s a wonderful process. It transforms their lives and we’re just so thrilled that we’re able to partner with her on this home.”

The idea for a brewer-built home came to Austin from Colorado; now there are more than 80 houses that beer built across the country, Snodgrass said.

It was a good fit for central Texas brewers, Pinthouse Pizza brewery manager Jacob Passey said.

“A lot of people leaning on other people for help, sharing things, raw materials, ideas, everything else,” Passey said. “It’s a very collaborative industry.”

In a city with a growing need for affordable housing, the growing roster of craft breweries is a benefit for those in need. Pinthouse has been documenting its employees’ contributions to the build on Facebook, and Passey said the more help they get, the better.

“I think the first year we did this it was a little bit of a struggle, and there were a few breweries donating a lot of money,” he said. “Now it’s a lot easier and we’ve got a lot of breweries involved, donating smaller amounts.”

You can donate to 2018’s House That Beer Built here. You can also sign up to volunteer at this link.

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