Herald-Whig View

Habitat for Humanity keeps transforming lives, neighborhoods

Posted: Jul. 23, 2018 3:20 pm

JUST down the street from a future Habitat for Humanity project at 622 Lind are other examples of how newly constructed homes can transform neighborhoods and how home ownership can transform lives.

Quincy Area Habitat for Humanity will start building a house on the site in August. The group put out the call last week for more volunteers and future building sites.

Joanne Dedert, volunteer coordinator for the local Habitat, said the home construction effort "helps the city and it helps everyone."

Mark Twain Area Habitat for Humanity has its own success stories. The latest project along Pleasant Street in Hannibal, Mo., got its start in April, then saw a huge surge during a Blitz Build in early June.

It's a success story that has been replicated around the world.

Habitat for Humanity International was founded in 1976 in Americus, Ga. Last year the organization announced that more than 13.2 million people have built or improved a place to live with Habitat's help. It has chapters in nearly 1,400 communities across the United States and operates in about 70 countries.

"First and foremost, we're a Christian housing ministry," Quincy chapter President Lee Lindsay told The Herald-Whig.

Many people who recognize the Habitat for Humanity name still may have misconceptions. Lindsay said she still corrects people who believe the group gives away homes.

Home recipients must be able to buy the homes at low interest and pay their taxes and insurance. Down payments and "sweat equity" work on the project also are expected from buyers.

Volunteers, who help put up or finish the structures, or those donating supplies, help the Habitat model work. Lindsay said partners, such as Mark and Chris Lawrence, who founded 2x4's for Hope, also help the charity. The Lawrences receive $3 contributions from people who then can write messages of encouragement or signatures on the lumber. The 2x4s are then provided free of charge for the structures.

There are lots of ways to help out.

Dedert said people with carpentry skills are vital, but there are projects that don't involve the ability to use a hammer or saw.

Children who attended Bible school at First Christian Church did their part by helping build a playhouse that will go with the next home.

Habitat for Humanity will start work on its 21st house in Quincy next month. Hannibal's chapter is completing its 11th house.

These projects offer a great opportunity for anyone who wants to give back to the community.

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