Blanco County Habitat for Humanity received a check for $1000 for their 2008 building program from The Real Ale Brewing Company. Each year since 2002 The Real Ale Brewing Company of Blanco, Texas, has hosted an annual benefit golf tournament. The Real Ale Brewing Company invites bars and distributors to sponsor individual holes to cover costs of the event. Tournament participants pay a fee that provides funds that are donated to local worthy causes.
The $1000 gift from the brewery will help to fund the next Habitat house in Blanco County. Brad Farbstein, owner, is grateful for the grass root support of the brewery. “Blanco County folks supported us as we were building the business. We want to give back to our community. We live here. Our employees live here.”
Gabriel Gregerman and Brad Farbstein of The Real Ale Brewing Company
share a vision of hope for their adopted home town of Blanco and the surrounding Hill Country community. Gabriel, a former part-time adult ESL teacher in Austin for the AISD, said that when she was doing that work she wanted to help people who had made the decision to acquire English. Her sense of the organic nature of a sound community can be stated simply as people helping people.
Brad’s academic studies and degree were in the field of economics, but it was obvious after a few minutes of conversation as we toured the new brewing facilities that Brad’s passion lies in art and science of brewing beer. He brews beer that is fresh and wholesome by design. Even the bottles and cartons carry this statement: “Handcrafted Ales from the Texas Hill Country.” Locally produced and locally grown. A totally “green” idea.
The couple’s awareness of Blanco County Habitat began this spring when Gabriel was studying to become a Blanco County Master Gardener. Part of Master Gardener program requires that interns volunteer their time in service projects that benefit the county community from which they come. Susan Hamm, Master Gardener trainer and member of BC Habitat for Humanity, suggested to this year’s interns that they could volunteer their time helping to install shrubs and bedding plants at the recently completed Habitat home. Gabriel worked on the project, and the rest is history.
Brad Farbstein and Gabriel Gregerman think that Habitat for Humanity exemplifies all that is good in community action. Habitat works to improve communities by aiming at the root of poverty: the lack of decent, affordable housing. They understand that, by helping a deserving family achieve the dream of home ownership, they can help add another family to the county tax role.
Gabriel observed, “Look around. There is a lack of housing for people who do the work around our community. I think that sound communities need to have varieties of life-styles. Everyone needs to have a decent place to live.”
Together Gabriel and Brad emphasize that “We believe in organic living. We believe in bringing people together to do something for others. They also echo the principles of Habitat for Humanity when they state that home ownership is important.
“Habitat is a great program that helps deserving families,” said Gregerman. “We are hoping that our gift will add a spark that spurs activity and interest in building the next Habitat house.”