Starting back in September, we have been sharing a weekly series called Employee Spotlight, featuring the staff at The Storefront and what we do. This week’s spotlight is on Dip Habib, our Manager of Volunteers, Events & Facilities.
Name: Dip Habib
Job Title: Manager, Volunteers, Events & Facilities
What do you do at The Storefront?
Most of my work is behind the scenes, supporting cross circle work to keep the core strong.
I develop effective volunteer recruitment & retention strategies, manage a volunteer pool of 300 plus, connect residents with appropriate volunteer opportunities, ensure efficient management of our facilities, plan activities for the gardening season, support various events and lead annual signature events to name a few.
Having been at The Storefront for 18 years, a big part of my role is to manage and maintain relationships with others in the community, so I am often the go-to person when someone needs to make a connection or be introduced to someone.
Favourite quote or motto you like?
My parents always believed in helping others and giving back. A quote that my father had that stuck with me since I was a child is: “Never take more than you give.”
How did you come to work at The Storefront?
I was working in Flemingdon Park when I saw a job opening for The Storefront. I applied for the job and the rest is history. I fell in love with working at The Storefront, especially with Anne’s leadership and guidance, and just the way she works, thinks, and her endless effort of exploring possibilities. Anne’s guidance, support and mentoring made me who I am today. Thankful to be working alongside Anne and helping build what The Storefront is today.
What does it mean to you to be part of a Community Backbone organization?
To me, it means helping build a culture that fosters relationships, trust, and community building. My role (behind the scenes) is to help people understand the complexity of the greater system that they are a part of and expand community impact.
Favourite show or book?
Clash of the Kings by George R. R. Martin.
What do you enjoy most about working at The Storefront?
I really enjoy working with our staff team and community members. I am always inspired by the endless community spirit of local residents.
Where is your favourite place to eat or your favourite food/cuisine?
What is a project that you are working on at The Storefront?
My current primary focus is to keep the facilities safe at The Storefront for everyone including the community partners, residents, and staff. I’m also utilizing my knowledge, skills and connections to help recruit volunteers for grassroot groups.
Apart from your work at The Storefront, what are some side projects or hobbies you have outside of the office?
I’m a neat freak. A hobby I have is cleaning and organizing. I love music, going to concerts. I also like to garden!
If someone were looking to join the team at The Storefront, or looking for work in a role similar to yours or in the nonprofit sector in general, what advice would you have for them?
For anyone looking to work in the nonprofit sector, it’s very important to do a values check to make sure your values align with the values of organizations of interest. To do that, my advice would be do your research on the organizations, even before a job opening comes in. I think it’s important to note that you shouldn’t expect to volunteer and get a job in the same organization, volunteering should be done out of goodwill. Money should also not be the primary incentive for joining the non-profit sector.
Favourite place you’ve traveled to/why
Most of my favourite places are in East Europe, especially Germany. Germany is very environmentally friendly and clean, they have lots of trees and windmills to generate renewable energy. Germany also has the best Heavy Metal Bands in the world.
What is on your wish list for the next five years?
A new building for The Storefront! A building that is made of renewable materials powered by green energy and solar power. We are always running out of space to house all the programs and resident-led activities. My wish is to see The Storefront have a brand new 3 storey building where the community garden is currently located. The three floors can be used to house all of our programs and the rooftop can be used as a community garden/greenhouse. Our current Storefront building can be demolished and be used as a park where fruit trees can be planted and the fruit be picked for free. It would also serve as a green space for families to spend time in. This big dream will need a ton of community input and support to make it happen. I feel like it’s a 10 Million dollar dream 🙂