Record Meaning of Home submissions raise $311,000 for Habitat for Humanity Canada

Third consecutive year students break a record in national writing contest

TORONTO, May 30, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- For the third year in a row, a record number of students entered Habitat for Humanity Canada’s Meaning of Home contest. The annual contest asks students in grades 4, 5, and 6 to share what home means to them. This year over 13,000 students entered, beating last year’s record by more than 1,000 entries and raising over $311,000 for local Habitat for Humanity organizations.

By sharing what home means to them, students learn about affordable housing issues in their community and raise funds to help build homes for people in need of safe and decent housing. The three grand prize winners have each won $30,000 grants that will go towards a local Habitat for Humanity organization. Nine runners up have won a $10,000 grant and every student who entered the contest earned a $10 donation for their local Habitat.

Grand prize winners:

John W. L. from Vancouver, British Columbia, is the Grade 4 grand prize winner and his $30,000 grant will go to Habitat for Humanity Greater Vancouver. Click here to read John’s winning entry “My Home is Made With Love”.

Rylan V. is the Grade 5 winner from Oakville, Ontario. His $30,000 grant will go to Habitat for Humanity Halton-Mississauga-Dufferin. Click here to read Rylan’s winning entry “If home were the 5 Senses”.

Peyton L. is the Grade 6 winner from Calgary, Alberta. Her $30,000 grant will go to Habitat for Humanity Southern Alberta. Click here to read Peyton’s winning entry “Home Sweet Home”.

“Having a decent and affordable home is foundational to building a better life. I’m reminded of that when I read the words these young people have written about what home means to them,” said Julia Deans, President and CEO of Habitat for Humanity Canada. “Words like safe, love, community, heart and memories –– that’s what home should mean to every child in Canada and that’s why we continue building and advocating for more affordable housing and homeownership.”

The Meaning of Home contest would not be possible without the generous support of Founding Sponsor, SagenTM, Award Sponsors Urban Systems Foundation, Chapman’s Ice Cream, and Home Trust, and Judging Sponsors Microban 24, Face to Face Games, and Hunter Douglas.

“We could not be more proud that this contest continues to grow year over year,” said Stuart Levings, President and CEO of Sagen. “Children across Canada are provided the unique opportunity to be a part of something so important on a national scale while helping their local community at the same time, all with a short poem or essay.”

To read all the winning entries, please visit

Runners up Grade 4

Kate J. – Truro, Nova ScotiaHabitat for Humanity Nova Scotia
Julia M. – KitchenerHabitat for Humanity Waterloo Region
Addyson L. – Cambridge, OntarioHabitat for Humanity Waterloo Region


Runners up Grade 5

Ada L. – Winnipeg, ManitobaHabitat for Humanity Manitoba
Diya C. – Niagara Falls, OntarioHabitat for Humanity Niagara
Gloria B. – Englehart, OntarioHabitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North


Runners up Grade 6

Malia M. – Castlegar, British ColumbiaHabitat for Humanity Southeast BC
Levi B. – Victoria, British ColumbiaHabitat for Humanity Victoria
Leia L. – Dartmouth, Nova ScotiaHabitat for Humanity Nova Scotia

About Sagen™
As a sponsor since 2000, Sagen has donated over $6.8 million in support of Habitat Canada and has helped thousands of Canadian families realize their dreams of affordable homeownership. While Sagen’s financial support provides crucial funding for their homeownership program, its support of Habitat Canada extends far beyond financial support. Throughout the sponsorship, Sagen employees from all levels of the organization, including President and CEO Stuart Levings and his executive team, have lent their leadership experience, industry knowledge and time to help launch many of Habitats’ signature programs, including the Sagen Homebuilding Grants, Global Village Volunteer Program in Canada and the Meaning of Home Contest. These programs, along with Sagen’s support and involvement in them has significantly increased their ability to raise funds, recruit volunteers and ultimately, support more families and build stronger communities. Find out more at

About Habitat for Humanity Canada
Founded in 1985, Habitat for Humanity Canada is a national charitable organization working toward a world where everyone has a decent and affordable place to call home. Habitat for Humanity brings communities together to help families build strength, stability and independence through affordable homeownership. With the help of volunteers, Habitat homeowners and 49 local Habitats working in every province and territory, we provide a solid foundation for better, healthier lives in Canada and around the world. Habitat for Humanity Canada is a member of Habitat for Humanity International, which was established in 1976 and has grown to become a leading global non-profit working in more than 70 countries. For more information, please visit

For more information:
Sarah Anderson Austin
Director, Communications
Habitat for Humanity Canada
C: 437-241-6974

Photos accompanying this announcement are available at:

John W L Grade 4 Grand Prize Winner Peyton L Grade 6 Meaning of Home grand prize winner Rylan V Grade 5 Meaning of Home grand prize winner