PEWAUKEE, Wis. - The Gustave A. Larson Co., an HVAC wholesale distributor, and American Standard have joined together to support the Waukesha County Habitat for Humanity's first "Women Build" project. The homeowner, a single mother with two children, will put 200 hours of "sweat equity" into the building of her home. The Larson Co. and American Standard will provide an American Standard high-efficiency furnace for the project. The Larson Co. has partnered with the Waukesha County Habitat for Humanity on two other projects.

An official program of Habitat for Humanity International, Women Build encourages women to join the effort to eliminate substandard housing in their own communities by picking up hammers to build Habitat homes. A recent study of Habitat for Humanity indicated that while over 50 percent of Habitat for Humanity volunteers are women, only 15 percent actively participate in the building process. The Women Build program provides women with an opportunity to learn construction in a supportive environment, teaching them new skills through both classroom and hands-on training opportunities.

The Larson Co. began as a small storefront in 1936 in Madison, Wis. The company maintains a $40 million inventory and an in-house truck fleet that replenishes the branches nightly. A state-of-the-art computer system links all 43 locations with the corporate offices and distribution center in Pewaukee, Wis.

Publication date: 07/03/2006