Project Mend-A-House has created Build A House, a fun summer crafts contest that also raises funds for this nonprofit’s great cause – helping the most vulnerable citizens in Prince William County who need minor repairs to their homes.

Individuals, families or teams of up to five people can build popsicle houses from craft sticks by purchasing a kit for $25 from Project Mend-A-House. Their creations will be judged at the Taste of the Town banquet in October, an annual fundraiser for Project Mend-A-House.

Contestants purchase a kit with 250 craft sticks, a foam core board (10” x 15”) and a glue container for a donation of $25.  The building can be any type (house, barn, cabin, garage, etc.), and it must fit on and be attached to the foam core board.  Participants may cut the popsicle sticks but can only use the kit’s sticks (more sticks may be purchased -100 sticks/$10).  Other glues are also acceptable.

Buildings may be painted or decorated and the outside area may be landscaped, if desired.  They will be judged on structural integrity, creativity and neatness (1st, 2nd and 3rd). There will also be fan favorites (1st, 2nd, 3rd and Honorable Mention) chosen at the Taste of the Town, where the houses will serve as table centerpieces.  Everyone attending will receive one free ticket to vote for their favorite house. All winners will receive a specially created Project Mend-A-House ribbon.

For nearly 30 years Project Mend-A-House has offered free home repairs and modifications to low- income seniors, people with disabilities and veterans in Prince William County.  Dedicated volunteers repair broken fixtures, install safety equipment, build accessibility ramps and perform other tasks so that these individuals may remain safely and independently in their own homes.

Barbara Reese of BR Associates, the contest sponsor, said this is a wonderful family project.  “We hope that this project will bring families together this summer to do something fun and also something that benefits the community.”

Last summer five-year-old Sarah Tamai threw herself into creating a bright pink little house for the Project Mend-A-House staff and volunteers. Her house had a rainbow, she said, “because Project Mend-A-House makes people happy with the work they do and they turn rainy days into nice days.”

To get your kit, call the Project Mend-A-House (PMAH) office at 703-792-7663.  You can pick your kit up at the PMAH office or ask that it be delivered to your home or office.