Habitat for Humanity Tahlequah Area

"We are a small 501(c)(3) that strives to provide adequate housing for low income families. Without the donations, our board would not be connected, and we would not be able to achieve our mission of reducing poverty housing."

—Linda Cheatham, executive director 

Communication Is a Foundation for Tahlequah Area Habitat for Humanity

Tahlequah, Oklahoma, has several distinctions. It is the capital of the Cherokee nation. It's a college town with 10,000 Northeastern State University students and a population of 18,000. And for 21 years it has been the home of Tahlequah Area Habitat for Humanity, the local affiliate of the national organization that builds homes, powered by volunteers, for qualifying low-income families. 

Despite its long history, this small nonprofit in northeast Oklahoma only moved into an office and began paying its staff of three four years ago. Since starting its operations, the organization has raised funds, volunteers, and materials to build nearly one house per year. 

Before opening its offices, the organization relied on the computing power and software of volunteers. But through TechSoup it was able to afford two dedicated refurbished laptops, one for executive director Linda Cheatham and the other for its fundraising storefront. A new version of Microsoft Office replaced an ancient edition of Word, perfect not only in the office, but also for the board members who used to be unable to share and read minutes, agendas, and financial statements. And the Excel spreadsheets have been tremendously helpful in tracking store inventory. 

The other great software upgrade received was QuickBooks from Intuit, which is used by the accountant and treasurer. Before QuickBooks, they used an Excel spreadsheet, which is just not quite the same. This new software has helped them increase their level of professionalism and helps them keep their records better and more accurately. After two financial audits and two reviews with the software, the once-tiresome process is almost a breeze.