Beloved Austin nonprofit HAAM fine-tunes mission with new permanent home
A critically important nonprofit that serves as a lifeline for Austin’s working musicians is getting a new home that it aims to establish as a community hub, all while working to drum up support from the local community for the essential services it provides.
HAAM, the Health Alliance for Austin Musicians, is purchasing a 7,134-square-foot office building at 3036 S. First St. that will enable the nonprofit to expand its offerings and programming to area musicians and further establish itself as a vital pillar of the Live Music Capital of the World.
HAAM’s new office, which will be established as the nonprofit’s permanent home, is expected to be fully operational by the third quarter of 2022.
Though the specific purchase price of the South Austin space was not disclosed, HAAM notes that the acquisition was made possible through a legacy gift of nearly $2.7 million from Robin and Bud Shivers to be used toward the purchase of a permanent home for the organization. Businesswoman, local philanthropist, and Austin music lover Robin Shivers founded HAAM in 2005 to address the previously unmet healthcare needs of low-income working Austin musicians.
“To continue our growth and meet the rising need, we need efficient infrastructure to support all 8,000-plus Austin musicians,” says Paul Scott, the new CEO of HAAM. “Providing additional needed support and care for our musicians requires adding additional staff while maximizing the efficiency of our current staff. Our current infrastructure and physical space limits our ability to grow in either capacity.”
Since 2005, HAAM has helped nearly 6,000 members access more than $113 million in healthcare services, ranging from primary and specialty care to dental, vision, hearing, mental health, and other services — all much-needed resources for Austin’s working musicians, particularly as the city becomes increasingly more expensive.
Indeed, HAAM says its success has been driven by increased demand for its services as the city has grown, with the organization seeing a 46 percent rise in membership since 2015. No doubt that the COVID pandemic has added an even more significant burden on Austin’s musicians, further contributing to the importance of access to HAAM’s services.
The expansion in programs will continue to save Austin lives, all while maximizing the community’s healthcare dollars by ensuring low-income working musicians are receiving efficient, cost-effective care, HAAM says.
The new HAAM home will enable the organization to add more program staff, which will in turn allow it to enroll new clients, as well as provide more services, including a musicians’ resource hub to address food insecurities, a hearing screening room, access to computers and Wi-Fi, and space for musician education and wellness training.
“This building will be so much more than just an office,” Scott says. “Our new home will be a welcoming and collaborative environment for clients to receive HAAM’s care and services, featuring a musicians’ resource lounge and dedicated stage for intimate performances by Austin’s amazing musicians.”
The announcement about the nonprofit’s new home comes as the organization embarks on the public-facing and final portion of its $6 million capital campaign.
Aside from the Shivers’ $2.7 million legacy gift for the headquarters space, the St. David’s Foundation also approved funding $1.25 million as a capital gift as well as a challenge grant. Additionally, the Topher Family Foundation and Cayetano Development have also donated $100,000 toward HAAM’s capital campaign.
As such, $4.4 million of HAAM’s $6 million capital campaign goal has already been raised.
“The capital campaign will help support the purchase and renovation of the new home for HAAM,” says Matt Long, HAAM board member and capital campaign committee member. “Seventy-five percent of our $6 million campaign has already been either donated or pledged, and now we publicly turn to our friends and partners in the community to help us bridge the gap. The Central Texas community has always been generous to its musicians, and we hope this is no exception.”
To learn more about HAAM and its services and to make a donation to the nonprofit, visit myhaam.org.