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AEP Foundation Grants $75,000 to Habitat for Humanity

November 4, 2021

AEP Foundation, on Behalf of I&M,
Provides $75,000 Grant to Help Habitat for Humanity
Build New Home in Southeast Fort Wayne

  • Grant funds nearly the entire cost of a new home on Mount Vernon Park Drive
  • Habitat for Humanity of Greater Fort Wayne develops new “square house” to complement lot
  • Home is 1 of 5 new Habitat for Humanity homes in Mount Vernon Park Drive Neighborhood

November 4, 2021

(Joint news release from Habitat for Humanity of Greater Fort Wayne and Indiana Michigan Power.)


FORT WAYNE – Thanks to a $75,000 grant from the AEP Foundation on behalf of Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) for Powering the Next Community Initiative, Habitat for Humanity of Greater Fort Wayne is pleased to build another affordable home in southeast Fort Wayne.

Artist's rendering of "square house"

Volunteers are helping build the new home in the 4900 block of Mount Vernon Park Drive. Volunteers continued working today on the home’s interior and installing siding on the exterior. The home is expected to be ready for occupancy in spring 2022.

“We are incredibly grateful for the continued support of the AEP Foundation. None of the work we do would be possible without the love and generosity of great organizations like theirs,” said Andrew Gritzmaker, chief executive officer of Habitat for Humanity of Great Fort Wayne. “The last several years their team has helped Habitat continue to dream big and innovate in an effort to serve more area families seeking the dream of homeownership. Not only does the AEP Foundation ensure members of our community have the necessities to build successful lives but also that the organizations that serve vulnerable populations do as well.”

The home is one of five that Habitat for Humanity is building in the Mount Vernon Park Neighborhood of Fort Wayne’s southeast side. One home was built in 2019, two more in 2020, and one more home will go up in addition to the one under construction.

“The AEP Foundation and Indiana Michigan Power welcome the opportunity to help Habitat for Humanity of Greater Fort Wayne meet the basic human need of affordable housing,” said Kelly Rentschler, Community Affairs manager for I&M. “Our employees value their opportunities to volunteer to help with building Habitat for Humanity homes, and we are pleased to be able to help this new home get built through our support of Habitat for Humanity.”

The AEP Foundation grant will cover nearly the entire cost of the new home. Like many other Habitat for Humanity homes in the area, the new home will have three bedrooms and one bathroom, and measure about 1,100 square feet.

However, the home will be different from many others built by Habitat for Humanity by featuring a square design rather than a rectangular shape. Habitat for Humanity developed the design of the home to accommodate the lot’s shape.  

The organization has served more than 250 families with homeownership opportunities since being established in 1987. I&M employees have supported Habitat for Humanity by participating in several home builds over the years.

The AEP Foundation and I&M employees have also supported the Habitat for Humanity of St. Joseph County, based in South Bend, with a grant and home building.

Habitat for Humanity strives to promote dignity and hope to families and to meet needs in a sustainable and transformational way. Owners of Habitat for Humanity homes must meet certain requirements, including attending classes to learn more about homeowner stability and financial stability. They also provide “sweat equity” by assisting in the home’s construction.

More information about Habitat for Humanity of Greater Fort Wayne is available at habitatgfw.com/

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ABOUT HABITAT FOR HUMANITY OF GREATER FORT WAYNE: Habitat for Humanity of Greater Fort Wayne is a nonprofit, non-denominational Christian housing ministry uniting volunteers and local investors with qualified families to provide the opportunity of affordable homeownership in Allen, Huntington and Wells counties. Habitat has provided sustainable homeownership to more than 250 families in the region in the past 35 years. Visit habitatgfw.com for more information on services and locations.

ABOUT THE AEP FOUNDATION: The American Electric Power Foundation is funded by American Electric Power (Nasdaq: AEP) and its operating subsidiaries. The Foundation provides a permanent, ongoing resource for charitable initiatives in the communities served by AEP and initiatives outside of AEP’s 11-state service area.

The Foundation focuses on improving lives through education from early childhood through higher education in the areas of science, technology, engineering and math; and by meeting basic needs for emergency shelter, affordable housing and the elimination of hunger; and championing social and racial justice. Other Foundation support may be offered to protect the environment, support healthcare and safety, and enrich life through art, music and cultural heritage.

ABOUT INDIANA MICHIGAN POWER: Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) is headquartered in Fort Wayne, and its approximately 2,100 employees serve more than 599,000 customers. More than two-thirds of its energy delivered in 2019 was emission-free.  I&M has at its availability various sources of generation including 2,278 MW of nuclear generation in Michigan, 450 MW of purchased wind generation from Indiana, more than 22 MW of hydro generation in both states and approximately 15 MW of large-scale solar generation in both states. The company’s generation portfolio also includes 2,620 MW of coal-fueled generation in Indiana.


Michael Kuhn                                                             
Family & Brand Advocate
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Fort Wayne

Tracy Warner
Corporate Communications Manager
Indiana Michigan Power


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