National student writing contest now open asking “what does home mean to you?”

(Friday, January 7, 2022 – Hamilton, ON) Students in grades 4, 5 and 6 are asked to share what home means to them in a national writing contest that is now open and accepting entries. Three grand prize winners will each receive a $30,000 grant to help a local Habitat for Humanity build a place to call home for a family in need of affordable housing.

Every student who enters the Meaning of Home contest earns a $10 donation towards their local Habitat for Humanity. In addition to the grand prize winners, nine runners up will receive a $10,000 grant for their local Habitat build.

Founded by Sagen™ in 2007, the Meaning of Home contest has raised over $1.7 million to help build decent and affordable housing in communities across Canada. Over 80,000 students have shared the importance of home in poems and short essays. Last year a record-breaking 12,000 entries were received.

“Home has been a refuge for so many over this difficult time. Home begins with four walls, but it doesn’t end there. It means so much more – more time with family and a safe and healthy place to study, to grow and to build community,” says Julia Deans, President and CEO of Habitat for Humanity Canada.

“Over the past couple of years, we’ve seen a strengthened communal understanding of what it means to retreat and take comfort at home. With the ongoing pressures and challenges of the pandemic, the meaning of home has certainly shifted,” says Sean Ferris, Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity Hamilton. “The Meaning of Home contest gives students, in grades 4 through 6, the opportunity to make a difference and help their local community in a tangible and meaningful way through these uncertain times.”

“This contest is a valuable learning tool for students to reflect on what home means to them and their family,” says Stuart Levings, President and CEO, Sagen. “As a founding sponsor of this contest, we are proud that the Meaning of Home contest has encouraged over 80,000 students to become more active and compassionate citizens.”

Submissions are being accepted by mail or online at until February 18, 2022. Winners will be announced by June.

The Meaning of Home contest would not be possible without the generous support of Founding Sponsor Sagen and Awards Sponsors Chapman’s Ice Cream, Urban Systems Foundation, and Home Trust.

About Habitat for Humanity Hamilton

Founded in 1991, Habitat for Humanity Hamilton is an independent, not-for-profit charity that builds strength, stability, and self-reliance through shelter. Habitat Hamilton has accommodated 33 local Habitat home partners since its incorporation and has several new builds and developments forthcoming. For more information, please visit

For more information, please contact:

Sean Ferris, Executive Director, Habitat for Humanity Hamilton
Phone: 905-560-6707 ext. 108

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