Thanks to the efforts of Vision-Ease Lens (VEL) and Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity, a local family will have a new home for the holidays. Vision-Ease Lens has partnered with the homeownership nonprofit for the past six years, donating a week of time and resources to construct a home.

Over five days and 480 volunteer hours, 56 Vision-Ease Lens employees worked on the handicap-accessible home in Columbia Heights, Minnesota. The project is a brand new construction home build and is projected to be completed by mid-November. Vision-Ease Lens volunteers installed sub floor and flooring, built exterior and interior wall framing, built front and back decks, installed roof trusses, roofing and sheathing, and built basement stairs.

“Participating in a Habitat for Humanity project is so much more than going and pounding nails. It’s creating communities, increasing values in neighborhoods, inspiring neighbors to make their own home improvements, providing leadership opportunities, and giving volunteers a chance to learn skills, work as a team and find opportunities for personal growth,” said John Oyen, Vision-Ease Lens’ director of human resources. “It’s a chance to make a positive and lasting impact on our community, and best of all, to provide a home to a family.”

Vision-Ease Lens also made monetary donations, and provided food and refreshments for those assisting with the project throughout the week. In addition to Habitat for Humanity, the company supports Toys for Tots, the United Way, ACB Food Shelf in Anoka, Minnesota, and other charitable organizations throughout the year.

For pictures of the Vision-Ease Lens volunteers at work, visit