SPONSOR A PLAYHOUSE
Operation Playhouse is a unique program that benefits veterans and military families and their children. We are proud to give back to those who have served our communities and country and encourage our partners to do the same.
REQUEST A PLAYHOUSE
We are looking to identify veterans or military members living in New England with young children up to 12 years of age who would like to receive a playhouse. Thank you for your service!
JOIN OUR BUILD-A-THONS
We annually host two playhouse Build-a-Thons. One is held in MetroWest and one in Greater Worcester. These are events where several organizations come together and build several playhouses.
BECOME A HOUSE CAPTAIN!
SPONSOR A PLAYHOUSE
Whether you join one of our Build-A-Thons, or build a playhouse at your own site, it is a rewarding and unique experience. Please call or email Deborah Huegel at Deborah.Huegel@habitatmwgw.org or 508-799-9259 x 118 for more information, and see below for more details. Thank you for your interest!
Operation Playhouse is a unique program that benefits local veterans and military families and their children. The playhouses provide a special place for family members to bond, play, dream, and think. It is a “home” of their own.
We are proud to give back to our veterans and military families who give so much to our communities and country. We are one of just a handful across the U.S. to provide the program, the day-long activity is popular and in demand with our sponsors and partners.
You can build a playhouse with your team at different venues. Playhouses can be built on your own site, space permitting, or we can help find you one. See more details below. Or, you can join our Build-A-Thons held in June in MetroWest and Greater Worcester.
How Does It Work? Your team of 8 – 10 will work together to construct and decorate colorful and themed children’s playhouses, which are then donated to the veteran family at the end of the day. Read what one recipient had to say after receiving a playhouse for their grandchild.
Where and When can I take part in Operation Playhouse? There are many options for your team to take part in building a playhouse to benefit the family of a veteran! We build outdoors from mid-April to mid-October (weather dependent), and indoors the rest of the year.
Weather permitting, we build outdoors and can come to your site, space permitting. If it rains, or the weather is too cold for paint to dry, we look for indoor space, or the partner provides the indoor space.
- The playhouse can be built right at your own site, indoors or outdoors, if the space is big enough and appropriate. (We need at least a 30’ x 40’ space for each playhouse to lay down tarps). The finished playhouses are approximately 4 1/5 feet width x 5 1/5 feet long x 5 feet tall.
- Or, you can find your own space, off-site, at which you’d like to build the playhouse. Our Operation Playhouse Manager will make an appointment to check out the site beforehand.
- Another option is to join one of our Operation Playhouse Build-A-Thons that we hold in MetroWest and Greater Worcester.
Who Builds the Playhouses? Teams of 8 – 10 people can build playhouses: corporations, faith groups, community organizations, and groups of friends.
What happens before the Operation Playhouse event? Before your Operation Playhouse event, our Operation Playhouse Coordinator will contact the parents of the child who is scheduled to receive a playhouse. The interests of the child are determined, and a theme for the playhouse is chosen. Playhouse themes include: American Flag/Patriotic, Barnyard, Castle, Cozy Cottage, Firehouse, Log Cabin, Minnie & Mickey Mouse, and New England Patriots. The themes are then passed along to each partner who is building the playhouse so they can be prepared for their day. Decorations or add-ons for the playhouse are optional, and some teams choose to purchase them.
The day of your event: On the day of your playhouse event, your team will gather at a pre-selected site from 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM. You will build the playhouse from a kit, paint, and decorate the playhouse according to your theme. At about 3:00 PM, the veteran family arrives at the site to receive the playhouse. The child is surprised and delighted, and it is a touching, personal, and heartwarming conclusion to the day. Your team will meet the family, spend time with them, and learn about the veteran’s or service.
Do I need experience? No experience is necessary! The playhouses are built from a kit. While you will be using some tools for simple construction tasks, we have experienced staff and volunteers on-site all day to help you every step of the way. There is plenty of time during the day to build the playhouse, paint and decorate it before the family arrives.
What we provide: We provide all tools, paints, and a table on which to store the items. We also provide staff and volunteers to help you during the day.
What do you contribute? Our partners contribute a tax-deductible donation of $3,000 for each playhouse built to cover the cost of materials, our staff time, and to further our efforts to expand Operation Playhouse to give back to more local firefighters, veterans and military families who have served our country. Many of our partners choose to purchase decorations to go along with the theme of their playhouse, based on the interests of the children. This is optional.
To view the Operation Playhouse brochure, click here.
A big thank you to our 2024 Operation Playhouse Hero Sponsors!
A big thank you to our 2024 Operation Playhouse Stars & Stripes Sponsors!
A big thank you to our 2024 Operation Playhouse Bravery Sponsors!
A big thank you to our 2023 Operation Playhouse Hero Sponsor!
A big thank you to our 2023 Operation Playhouse Stars & Stripes Sponsors!
A big thank you to our 2023 Operation Playhouse Honor Sponsors!
A big thank you to our 2023 Operation Playhouse Bravery Sponsors!
HERE’S SOME FEEDBACK FROM OUR OPERATION PLAYHOUSE PARTNERS:
VIEW THE VIDEO AND PHOTOS FROM THE AMERESCO EVENT TO EXPERIENCE A PLAYHOUSE BUILD FROM START TO FINISH © AMERESCO, INC. 2021
“Our team had the absolute BEST day today for Ameresco’s #OperationPlayhouse. Gerry (Operation Playhouse Team Leader) is a rockstar, and was so helpful throughout the day. The entire playhouse build process was so much fun – it was great hands-on team building and many learned new practical skills. We were honored to present our Red Sox and Log Cabin themed playhouses to the families at the end of the day. There were smiles and tears all around; we are over the moon with gratitude to be able to take part in this amazing Operation Playhouse program. Tremendous THANK YOU on behalf of the entire Ameresco team for everything you, Gerry, and the Habitat team do to make this amazing program a reality for our local veteran families.”
Ameresco, Director – Marketing & Communications
Partners since August 2021
VIEW THE VIDEO AND PHOTOS FROM THE SECURITY ENGINEERED MACHINERY (SEM) EVENT TO EXPERIENCE A PLAYHOUSE BUILD FROM START TO FINISH
“Veterans have a special place in our heart here at SEM,” said Mr. Cakounes, who is SEM’s Executive Vice President “We are filled with gratitude to those who have served our country and protect our freedom, so giving back in some small way through Operation Playhouse was an absolute honor.”
“This event was incredibly special to me personally,” added Korean War Veteran Leonard Rosen, who is SEM’s founder and Chairman of the Board. “Mr. Brown selflessly served his country, ensuring our rights and freedom. That is a debt we can never repay, so we were thrilled to be able to do something to bring joy to him and his family.”
Partners since 2018.
READY TO MOVE FORWARD WITH AN OPERATION PLAYHOUSE BUILD? OR FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT DEBORAH HUEGEL AT DEBORAH.HUEGEL@HABITATMWGW.ORG OR BY PHONE AT 508-799-9259 X 118.
REQUEST A PLAYHOUSE
More about How To Request A Playhouse
If you are interested and meet the above criteria, the next steps are to review the information below and complete the Application.
“I wanted to write and personally thank you for our Playhouse we received last month. The kids love it and we are so grateful. Words cannot express our true appreciation for what you, Habitat and all the participants did. You guys are simply amazing. God Bless!” – Kevin, Robyn, Reagan and Georgia Preston
“Can’t thank the folks at Operation Playhouse enough! They knocked it out of the park with their generosity, kindness and craftsmanship. My kids absolutely love the playhouse, and practically spend every day in it, thanks again all!” – MAJ Matthew R. Paquin, AO/HHD Commander MEDCOM
“My family is very grateful for the support that Habitat for Humanity provided us. The playhouse they built for our two sons was a wonderful gift. The boys absolutely love it! We cannot thank them enough for their kindness and generosity.” -Glen Kernusky
Stay tuned for our June 2024 OPERATION PLAYHOUSE BUILD-A-THONS dates!
2024 OPERATION PLAYHOUSE BUILD-A-THONS
Our Worcester Playhouse Build-A-Thon will be held in Elm Park. Read more about Elm Park here: Elm Park
Our MetroWest Playhouse Build-A-Thon location is to be determined
Join us with your team of 8 – 10 where you will be building a playhouse in a one day event for a veteran family, and presenting it to them at the end of the day! You will receive instruction and hands-on guidance by staff and volunteers. It’s a great way to encourage team building, camaraderie, learn new skills and give back to veterans and firefighters.
Please email Deborah Huegel at Deborah.Huegel@habitatmwgw.org or call 508-799-9259 x 118 for more information. Whether you take part in our Build-A-Thons or build a playhouse at your own site, it is a team-building experience like no other. It is fun, unique, rewarding, and fosters collaboration and communication while benefitting a local veteran family. Thank you for your interest!
Watch the video of the 2022 Operation Playhouse Build-A-Thon event in Elm Park: Operation Playhouse Build-A-Thon
Operation Playhouse Build-A-Thon events are where multiple sponsors come together at one site to build their own playhouse for the children of veteran and military families!
- Each Build-A-Thon event takes place in one day and is hosted from 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM.
- Each team at the Build-A-Thon will be comprised of 8-10 people.
- Each team will meet the firefighter or veteran family for whom they build the playhouse at the end of the day in a small celebration.
- A Build-A-Thon is an exciting event to take part in – meet new people and make new friends as you build your playhouse for a firefighter or veteran family.
Photos to the left are from past Build-A-Thon events at MetroFest and Greater Worcester.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT DEBORAH HUEGEL AT DEBORAH.HUEGEL@HABITATMWGW.ORG OR BY PHONE AT 508-799-9259 X 118.