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Article Archive >> Community

Building Homes, Rebuilding Lives: Notice This Column's Name!

Building Homes, Rebuilding Lives
Notice This Column's Name!

Did you notice this column's name? "Building Homes, Rebuilding Lives"? People often speak about volunteering with Habitat to build a house. That doesn't happen! Oh, yes, a building is erected. And it falls within that broad category called "houses", but it is much, much more! It is building hope! It is building relationships! It is building self-confidence in many families! It is nurturing families! It is strengthening communities! It is building homes! It is rebuilding lives!
And, it is not just rebuilding the lives of the families in need of a home. It is also rebuilding the lives of the many individuals volunteering their time and talents to help build these homes. Many Habitat workers have never before been involved in volunteer efforts with community activities. Then, something causes them to decide to help build a home for a deserving family. Suddenly, they are caught up in the excitement that comes from seeing how their efforts have helped lift the spirits of others. They experience a feeling they have never felt before. It is intoxicating and they want to do more. They begin to realize they are helping to make some family's dream come true.
They experience the excitement and emotion of the family to receive the home, as they work shoulder to shoulder with them on the job site. These volunteers know how important a home is to a family. It is a house of their own. It is a haven where their children can grow and develop into responsible people.
The excitement and emotion is again experienced by these volunteers at the home dedication ceremonies, where one can observe tears of joy in the eyes of these volunteers because they know a family's dream is coming true. And the family treasures the volunteers for their dedication to help build the home and then take time to attend the dedication ceremony with their family.
Many families are in need of safe, affordable housing! Is a basic necessity for every family! Many of us really do not understand that because we have never faced these issues. We have been fortunate to grow up in a decent place to live. Not so with every family! Catastrophes and tragedies have erupted the lives of many families. It has been a lifetime struggle for many to regain a home. Some have never been able to do so. Habitat for Humanity is a vehicle to provide that opportunity.
Habitat for Humanity of Washington County touches lives! It helps families to achieve the dream of owning a home. It provides a program where families seeking to own a home can work alongside volunteers to build that home. Then they are allowed to purchase it at no profit and with zero interest loans, making payments they can afford. The homes are built with donated materials or with materials purchased with donated funds. Funding is essential! It is all through donations of a caring public! A caring community that realizes it has a responsibility to see that the children of our next generation are not scarred by substandard housing and homelessness.
Homes require sponsors! It takes money to buy land - to construct houses! Individuals, companies or organizations may sponsor a home. Or they may be willing to donate land or materials! Or perhaps make a cash donation! For more information on any of these items, or it you want to experience the thrill of becoming a volunteer, please call Sherry Brown Cooper, Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity of Washington County at 301-791-9009.

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

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