We're excited to highlight Kim Hannay, co-founder of Digs with Dignity (a Chicago-based non-profit organization) as October's Chompian of the Month, along with her partner and Digs' other co-founder, Jan Claiborne.
You can follow Digs with Dignity on Instagram here.
Can you tell us about yourself - what you do, a bit about your story, etc.?
Digs was founded in October of 2019. The organization was built around the idea of collecting furniture and home goods from the community, and using these donations to furnish homes for families transitioning from homelessness, while keeping these items out of landfills. Over the past 2 years, with the help of our incredible staff and volunteers, we have created safe, dignified homes for over 50 families! Our process is simple. We meet with families, learn about their interests, needs, and what it takes to make their space feel like home. Then, we collaborate with our designer, Beth to create a custom space for each client, selecting gently used and refurbished furniture from our warehouse. Led by our in-house repair guy, Jan, we sand, paint, change knobs, and upcycle donated furniture from the community. After we are staged and ready to go, we begin the DIGS “move-in” Day. With a crew of passionate volunteers, we clean, lift a lot of heavy stuff, and decorate every room of the space, creating a personalized, fully outfitted home for each family!
What’s your best tip on how to stay positive?
When things get tough, a deep breath, a reminder of why we do what we do, and a good laugh help us stay positive!
What’s your workout routine?
Lifting heavy furniture up 3 winding flights of stairs on our DIGS Days is the ultimate cardio/strength workout!
How do you consider yourself a “game changer?” This is 100% open to your interpretation!
Our work at Digs is significantly impacting families' lives. Imagine getting your first place, your first job, with 3 little mouths to feed. You come home after a hard day’s work, eat on the floor with paper plates, and then, put your kids to bed on an air mattress that you all share.
Now, imagine walking into a home with a desk where your kids do their homework, a fully stocked kitchen, bedrooms with cozy pillows to sleep on at night, and a table to gather for dinner.
We turn a house into a home that will foster self worth, and instill stability into the family’s life. And, as self worth grows, dreams are built, goals are set, potential is realized.
What’s the best thing you do for your personal health everyday (mental or physical)?
We have the BEST crew. We laugh together, support each other, and all are truly so invested in seeing our organization and our families succeed. Laughter is the best medicine, and we have a lot of it. From the occasional dance break, boomerangs galore, and celebrating the small wins we have along the way, we are all grounded in the work we do to impact lives every day!
What is your favorite Chomps product?
Jalapeño Beef, cause we like it hot!
How does Chomps fuel your lifestyle?
Chomps snacks get us through long days at the warehouse, giving us the power we need to accomplish great things!