$25,000 of tools stolen from Habitat for Humanity of Southwest Montana | Nation

BUTTE, Mont. — When it comes to providing the community with affordable housing and renovation projects, Habitat for Humanity is usually the one to help.

But after a break-in worth thousands of dollars in damage and stolen equipment, the tables are turned – Habitat for Humanity is the one in need of help.

On the morning of Wednesday, July 20, Habitat for Humanity of Southwest Montana discovered that their tool truck had been stolen from its warehouse.

Fortunately, the truck was recovered with minor damage. But $5,000 in property damage was done to the warehouse and $25,000 in tools inside the truck were missing.

“Compressors, nail guns, pipes, cords, brackets, bags that our carpenters use daily,” said construction project manager Todd Hunkler, listing the stolen items. “If it’s something you need to build a house, it was in that truck.”

As Hunkler says, these tools are the lifeblood of the organization. And without them, all construction operations in Butte, Anaconda, Whitehall and other towns in southwestern Montana came to a screeching halt.

“We participate in a self-help housing program, where we help families build their own homes, and these tools are a critical part of that,” Hunkler said. “Families use them, our carpenters use them. Without the tools, we can’t run our day-to-day program.”

At this time, Habitat for Humanity is working with the police to recover the stolen tools. But with the construction season winding down, they don’t have much time to raise the funds to buy new tools and get back to business if the stolen tools don’t show up.

This is where they hope the community can step in – and there are a number of ways to do this.

“All products donated to our ReStore (located at 640 W Arizona St.) contribute to these sales which, in turn, go back to our programs,” Hunkler said. “You can also look for volunteer opportunities with our organizations.”

Finally, you can donate to the Habitat for Humanity GoFundMe page or visit the Habitat for Humanity Southwest Montana website and donate there.

We also encourage you to contact Habitat for Humanity if you purchase or receive construction tools suspiciously.

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