Fittingly, Habitat for Humanity of Greater Dayton’s first new home build in Springfield is a Faith Build project. Several local pastors and faith leaders gathered for the official groundbreaking ceremony last Tuesday. Joining them was soon-to-be homeowner Katara and her four children and many others. This is a milestone for Habitat for Humanity of Greater Dayton because the organization only added Clark County to its tri-county footprint last February.
“It really shows what we at Habitat want to do here,” Habitat Executive Director Norm Miozzi said to the numerous members of the faith community in attendance. “Your being here, bringing your communities, your congregations and your faith to this project means so much to us.”
Uniting the faith community to bless a hard-working family with a new home they wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford is the foundation of the Faith Build program. Thrivent is the main sponsor of the project, donating about a third of the cost to build the new home. “We’re just happy to be a part of this,” said Thrivent representative Adam Bowling. “We just want to be a blessing to the community.”
Concord United Methodist Church built and donated the wall panels for the project, which were onsite Tuesday, this past Saturday in Englewood. Several local nonprofits have joined in on the project, including the Crabill Family Foundation, The Springfield Foundation, the Shouvlin Foundation, and the Carleton F. & Ruth Davidson Trust.
Katara is already eternally grateful for their help, even though the first nail of her home has yet to be hammered. The single mother of four spoke of the safety and stability that she anticipates it will give her family.
“You would think that the house we are in now is safe by looking at it, but if you stay there for a couple of hours, you’d know how dangerous the neighborhood is,” said Katara, who works for Stanley Electric in London. “Our neighborhood has been in the news the last couple of months with shootings. One person was shot at the corner just down from our house. I try to keep my kids blinded to a lot of this, but they know. This is our safe haven, our way out!
“I’m jittery; I’m anxious,” she continued. “This has been a long-time goal for me. I wanted my kids to have a home to come to, not just a house. Some place that is safe. Some place that gives us stability. Those are the big things for me.”
One member of the local business community, Kraig Casey, Director of Business Services & Development for Pathways Financial Credit Union, which is putting the finishing touches on a new office on South Limestone Street in Springfield, summed the day up well: “It’s great to see the hope that is here. We exist to help people buy or remodel homes, just like (Habitat). This is how we build up community.”
If you know of a church, business or volunteer who wants to help with this Faith Build project, call Volunteer Services Coordinator, Kristina Day at 937.965.7679. If you would like to learn more about the Habitat Faith Family program, call Kermit Rowe at 937.610.0449.