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Article Archive >> Community

Building Homes! Rebuilding Lives! WOW! What A Great Event!

Building Homes! Rebuilding Lives!
WOW! What A Great Event!

Yes, it really was a great event! The decor and the music took us back in time to that fabulous period of the 50's. At least a goodly number of us could recall that period. And, those of a younger age seemed equally as thrilled.
I'm referring to the "Rock'n thru the 50's with Habitat" Auction Dinner recently held at Hagerstown Community College's ARCC. Sherry Brown-Cooper, Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity of Washington County said, "We had more than 560 people in attendance. This is the fourth consecutive year we sold all the tickets before the ticket deadline. People know what a fun event our auction dinner is, and how important it is to support Habitat's work of providing decent homes for the needy. We're very thankful for the community's support."
Over 200 items were featured in the silent auction, which took place before an excellent dinner provided by Leiter's Catering. The live auction was held after the meal and featured tickets as guests of Jeff Gordon at a NASCAR Race in Charlotte, NC; vacations at resorts in four Caribbean resorts; and a Mark Tremonti SE model guitar made and signed by Paul Reed Smith especially for this vent. Other live auction items drawing much attention were a jukebox with 100 compact discs, and a 1980 Cadillac Seville Sedan donated by GRG Classics.
This 14th Annual auction dinner fundraiser raised $70,000 that will help Habitat build affordable housing for low-income families in Washington County. Many residents of Washington County are living in houses beyond their means. Most of them have low-incomes and struggle to make rent payments. Habitat for Humanity addresses the critical problem of crowded, unsafe, inadequate housing for those living near and below the poverty level.
Often the homes are nothing but dilapidated shacks without plumbing or electricity. There's nothing safe and decent about them. Habitat provides more than just safe, decent housing. Habitat provides home ownership because home ownership is better for communities. A rental family moves more frequently, into and out of school districts. Neighborhoods with higher rates of homeownership tend to be more stable. They become people with a vested interest in their community.
Habitat works in partnership with needy families to meet these housing challenges in our community. The homes are built with volunteer labor and the "sweat equity" of the approved applicant for home ownership. The applicant's family must contribute 500 hours of labor with Habitat before taking title to the home. Habitat sells the homes at no profit and offers a zero interest mortgage. Payments from the homeowners are used to build more homes
During 2007, The Churchey Group II, LCC, builders of Greenwich Park, will donate $1,000 of each new home sold to the local Habitat facility. Trish Churchey, representative of the group, stated, "We think the work done by Habitat is so great. We want to help out by donating $1,000 of each home we sell. We would like to encourage other builders to do the same."
Habitat has built 24-homes in Washington County. Two more are scheduled to be completed during 2007 and Habitat plans to start work on a third.
The auction dinner program carried an appeal that land, building materials, and skilled home construction workers are always needed. For more information call Habitat at 301-791-9009.

William L. Bulla is a freelance writer residing in Washington County.

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