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Habitat for Humanity Sault Ste. Marie & Area gets new wheels from Nissan Canada Foundation

The keys to the Nissan Pathfinder are handed over to Katie Blunt, Executive Director at Habitat SSM

A brand new 2022 Nissan Pathfinder SV will soon be put to work, helping Habitat for Humanity Sault Ste. Marie & Area (Habitat SSMA) build more homes and serve more families.

On January 25, 2023, Habitat SSMA celebrated its new Pathfinder at their local Superior Nissan Dealership after being awarded a $60,000 grant from Nissan Canada Foundation to cover the cost of the vehicle.

The Nissan Canada Foundation has been building homes – and hope – with Habitat for Humanity Canada since 2008.

“Having a permanent home allows a family to realize stability and a sense of community,” said Steve Milette, president of Nissan Canada Inc. “Our relationship with Habitat for Humanity allows us to drive meaningful change, work together with our dealer network and engage our employees, not only as good corporate citizens, but as neighbours in the communities in which we live, work and serve. “

From left to right: Katie Blunt, Executive Director at Habitat for Humanity Sault Ste. Marie & Area; Marzena Mo, Senior Planner Internal Communications and Corporate Social Responsibility at Nissan Canada; Allie Kantovaara, Sales Manager at Superior Nissan; Carlos Castaneda, Dealer Operations Manager, Central Region, Nissan Canada

Aside from its Habitat ReStore box truck, Habitat SSMA did not have a vehicle for everyday use. Staff and volunteers used their own vehicles for build site activities, fundraising, meetings throughout Algoma, volunteer recruitment, and more. Habitat SSMA’s bright blue Nissan Pathfinder will help the organization scale up operations and raise awareness of its mission.

“We are very grateful for this grant, and the opportunities this vehicle will open for us and the families we serve. Employees and volunteers will have a greater ability to travel and build relationships throughout the Algoma District,” states Katie Blunt, Executive Director. “This grant also alleviates some of the pressure around fundraising during a pandemic. Habitat’s mission is more relevant now than ever, and Nissan is helping us deliver affordable housing in Algoma with this vehicle.”

Nissan Canada and Superior Nissan staff, and Habitat SSMA staff and volunteers, gather for a group photo around Habitat’s new Nissan Pathfinder

This grant was made possible by an ongoing partnership between Habitat for Humanity Canada and the Nissan Canada Foundation. To date, the Nissan Canada Foundation’s contribution of donations and volunteer hours towards Habitat for Humanity Canada has exceeded $3 million.

Habitat SSMA announced the expansion of its service area into the rest of the Algoma District earlier this year. A chapter system will be a key element of Habitat’s expansion. Chapters will be made up of service-oriented volunteers who agree to champion the construction of a Habitat Home (or homes) outside of Sault Ste. Marie by fundraising and forming partnerships in their own communities. The organization is also considering a renovations and repairs program. Groups interested in starting a Chapter outside of Sault Ste. Marie can contact the organization for more information.

“The Nissan Canada Foundation’s support of Habitat for Humanity’s work throughout the country has been invaluable,” says Julia Deans, President and CEO of Habitat for Humanity Canada. “Congratulations to Habitat for Humanity Sault Ste. Marie & Area on not only its new chapter but also this new vehicle. As Habitat Sault Ste. Marie & Area expands, this car will allow it to continue its great work building decent and affordable places for more people to call home.”

As a non-profit, HFHSSMA relies on the generosity of volunteers, donors, and corporate sponsors to achieve its mission. Every volunteer and donation helps a family build a decent and affordable home in our community. If you are interested in donating or volunteering, please visit our website at for more information.

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