The upcoming holiday is a chance to reflect on the new “normal” we’ve been living for these past 8 months. It’s a chance to be grateful for having a safe place to call home. Work, school, and just about everything has taken place remotely, and having a place to call home is more important than ever this year.
With home at the center of all our lives, changes that affect housing are particularly tumultuous. When Luis, a full-time cabinetmaker, and single father of 16-year-old Natalie, was told his monthly rent was set to increase by 50%- he knew they needed a change. This insecurity in Luis’s living situation had a silver lining; it led him to Habitat for Humanity.
Luis has worked so hard to qualify for our home buying program and build his own home, including completing the required sweat equity hours faster than any of our other applicants have – ever. While a great accomplishment, it did not surprise anyone, because Luis is a hardworking, self-reliant dad determined to give 16-year-old Natalie a safe home in a good neighborhood. This family has never owned their own home, but their dream of homeownership is on the horizon; they may even be able to move in by the New Year with enough support from our caring constituents.
Because of community support, Habitat homes are special. Our program allows Luis and others like him to pay an affordable mortgage because their house is constructed at a reasonable cost. This is something to be grateful for this holiday season, a glimpse of hope and goodness in this time of uncertainty.
With your help, we continue building for families like Luis despite having less than a third of our volunteers on build sites and increased cost of supplies. With COVID-19 disrupting manufacturing and distribution, the cost of supplies is much higher this year than in previous years. Donations in this difficult time help to offset these additional costs to help continue building homes for Luis and the other families in our program.
Luis and Natalie’s reasons for wanting to own their home are ones we all share. Luis looks forward to washing and repairing his car in his own driveway, not relying on a car wash or mechanic, and fixing things when they break in the house, instead of waiting for maintenance. Natalie hopes for a quiet room to decorate it the way she wants and a quiet place to study her schoolwork.
Take a moment and reflect on how you’re grateful for your home and all it has provided for you during this turbulent time.
Participate in our social media campaign- the #UnderMyRoof Challenge to share with your friends and family that you believe everyone deserves a decent and affordable home to spend the holidays. Make a donation to help finish Luis and Natalie’s home this holiday season.