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Article Archive >> Community

Building Homes, Rebuilding Lives!A Beacon of Hope!

Building Homes, Rebuilding Lives!
A Beacon of Hope!

In the midst of a worldwide housing crisis, millions of families still live in dangerous, unhealthy housing, struggling every day to survive. For them, Habitat for Humanity's self-help housing program is a "beacon of hope".
Habitat for Humanity works in partnership with families to eliminate substandard housing, and enable families and volunteers to improve lives. It creates hope by building homes and rebuilding lives while strengthening neighborhoods and communities.
It's a "hands-up" partnership opportunity for low-income, working families to become self-sufficient homeowners. Far too many people struggle without an adequate home to raise their family. In many cases, children's health and safety are a daily cause for concern. Habitat offers qualified families with demonstrated needs, willingness to partner, and the ability to pay a zero-interest loan, an opportunity to build and buy a home. Habitat for Humanity brings urban and suburban communities together to make safe, affordable housing, better lives and better neighborhoods a reality for everyone.
How does it work? It's simple! Individuals, corporations and organizations throughout the community donate money, building materials and support services. After an extensive application process, Partner Families are required to invest at least 500-hours in the Habitat's "sweat-equity" process of volunteering time in the construction of their own home. The Partner Family then purchases the home with a no-interest, no-profit mortgage.
That's the way Habitat for Humanity works in nearly 3,000 affiliates around the globe. And, that is the way it works with Habitat for Humanity of Washington County. We have hundreds of hard-working families in our county living in overcrowded or unsafe housing. Safe, affordable housing is a basic necessity for every family. Many of our neighbors are currently paying more than 30% of their income for housing. They are unable to find an affordable alternative. They are unable to purchase a home with a normal mortgage or bank loan. That's where Habitat becomes a "beacon of hope". The affiliate's program of providing "A hand-up, not a hand-out" has rebuilt many lives throughout our county. Many of us may not understand because we have never faced these issues. We may have 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, a beacon of hope, to provide that opportunity.
Habitat for Humanity of Washington County touches lives! It helps families to achieve the dream of owning a home. The homes are built with donated materials or with materials purchased with donated funds. Funding is essential! It is made possible through donations of a caring public! A caring community that realizes it has a responsibility to see that the children of our next generation is 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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