clearn.png
Saturday July 11th, 2020 12:27AM

For Goodness Sake: Habitat for Humanity for Hall County

By Lauren Hunter Multimedia Journalist

The logo for Habitat for Humanity symbolizes its purpose. It’s an image of three people, one stretching their arms to lift the roof of a house while the others help alongside them.

Since 1989, members of the Habitat for Humanity for Hall County chapter have worked to embody what the logo represents. This dedicated group of volunteers put aside their differences and put on a hard hat to work together and build affordable homes for the homeless in their community.

As of their latest house dedication this winter, volunteers with the Hall County chapter have completed 65 houses total, with 55 of the homes built from the ground up and the other 10 from rehabilitation.

A common misconception with Habitat for Humanity is that homeowners receive their home for free, but nothing could be farther from the truth. In fact, staff and volunteers with the non-profit will say that in many ways it’s harder to be a Habitat homeowner than purchasing a house of their own.

First, Habitat for Humanity requires that applicants meet three basic requirements before they are considered for homeownership: have a need, an ability to repay and a willingness to partner.

Following their approval, new Habitat homeowners must commit to several financial classes through the non-profit and at least 260 hours of construction on their home and the homes of other Habitat homeowners. After their home is complete, Habitat homeowners continue to pay an affordable mortgage.

Although it’s a long road to the final product, becoming a Habitat for Humanity for Hall County homeowner is a rewarding journey. Homeowners often become close friends with the volunteers who help with the construction of their home and their neighbors nearby. Each journey culminates in a house dedication day following the completion of a new home, where the bonds between homeowners and volunteers are evident.

“My favorite and best days are dedication days,” said Alison McElvery, Executive Director for Habitat for Humanity for Hall County. “What I love even better is when the family says, ‘I put the first nail in!’ or ‘I was the last one to paint the door!’…it’s a pride of ownership.”

The close bonds and affordable mortgages are undoubtedly major reasons for the success of this organization.

According to Christine Osasu, Director of Community Outreach and Digital Media for Habitat for Humanity for Hall County, the non-profit has a 97% success rate of homeowners continuing to pay their mortgages.

“We offer a chronic solution to both a crisis and chronic problem,” said Osasu. “People are always going to need housing throughout their life from birth to the cradle to the grave…we are creating a generational solution.”

While Habitat for Humanity for Hall County exists for potential homeowners, there are many ways the community can get involved.

For starters, this non-profit is always open to volunteers and sponsors who may want to help with construction. Habitat for Humanity also participates in International Women Build Week and partners with Lowe’s to encourage women to work on constructing a home.

Outside of construction, Habitat for Humanity for Hall County has a Restore on Murphy Boulevard in Gainesville. This store accepts donations of furniture, appliances and other household items from the community to resell at a reasonable price.

Just like the Habitat for Humanity logo, volunteers and Habitat homeowners work hand in hand for the continued growth of the non-profit and it’s benefit for the community.

“Not only does this [non-profit] gives individuals the opportunity to come out and put their faith into action, but it allows groups, corporations and churches to come out and also participate,” said Osasu.

“It takes a village to put a homeowner in a house,” said McElvery. “All I say is everybody has a chance to be a part of the village.”

Through this organization, the faith of volunteers and the willingness of new homeowners come together to result in many inspirational stories of overcoming hard times.

“We just recently had a homeowner who two of her children went to college, she sold her house, walked away from the closing with a profit and came and paid us back,” said McElvery. “When she came in and we were high-fiving and hugging and loving on one another, she said, ‘Wait a minute, I also paid off my car, I owe nobody.’ ”

More information about this local non-profit is on their website https://habitathallcounty.org/.

For Goodness Sake is a monthly series highlighting non-profits in the North Georgia area. If you have an organization that you would like to see included in this series, please email lauren.hunter@jacobsmedia.net

  • Associated Categories: Homepage, Local/State News, Videos
  • Associated Tags: Habitat for Humanity for Hall County, For Goodness Sake
© Copyright 2020 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Lawsuit: Georgia mail-in ballot postage is unconstitutional
A federal lawsuit says that by requiring Georgia voters to provide their own stamps for mail-in ballots, the state is effectively imposing a poll tax
4:44PM ( 23 minutes ago )
Kemp: Statewide shelter-in-place extended through April 30
Gov. Brian Kemp on Wednesday extended the statewide shelter-in-place order through April 30 as Georgia tries to slow the spread of the Coronavirus.
4:25PM ( 43 minutes ago )
Updated
For Goodness Sake: Habitat for Humanity for Hall County
The logo for Habitat for Humanity symbolizes its purpose. Since 1989, members of the Habitat for Humanity for Hall County chapter have worked to embody what the logo represents.
2:00PM ( 3 hours ago )
Local/State News
Hall County detectives ask for help as they search for vandals
Investigators with the Hall County Sheriff's Office are asking the public for some help as they work to resolve some property damage incidents at a community off Lanier Islands Parkway.
1:33PM ( 1 week ago )
GHS marching band could hold online auditions
When it comes to high school football, the marching band is an essential part of the gameday atmosphere.
4:30PM ( 1 week ago )
Small Business Spotlight: Alliance Prosthetics and Orthotics
Alliance Prosthetics and Orthotics is a medical practice that specializes in treating patients with orthoses, or braces, and prostheses, or artificial limbs. The business first opened in Braselton in 2016, then followed with another location in Gainesville in September of 2019.
12:30PM ( 2 weeks ago )
Videos
Vermont students journey south to volunteer in Hall County
A group of eight students from the University of Vermont traveled twenty hours this week to spend their spring break volunteering in Gainesville.
12:00PM ( 3 weeks ago )
Habitat for Humanity home dedication brings community together
At first glance the Copper Glen subdivision in Gainesville seems like your average neighborhood. And Jeremy and Sandy Roberts with their children might seem like an average family. But there is one aspect about these two things that separate them from average- and that’s their involvement with Habitat for Humanity for Hall County.
3:15PM ( 1 month ago )
For Goodness Sake: Eagle Ranch
Eagle Ranch encompasses 315 acres off Union Church Road in Chestnut Mountain and looks more like a retreat than a place for families in crisis. Rolling hills are dotted with the boys’, girls’ and staff members’ homes, while the man-made lake and peaceful chapel are a serene escape from the bustle of everyday life.
1:00PM ( 4 weeks ago )
For Goodness Sake: Aim to Be3, Inc.
Empowered, engaged and exceptional. Together these three words form the basis of Aim to Be3, Inc., or simply Be3, a new non-profit in the heart of downtown Gainesville.
12:00PM ( 1 month ago )
Lawsuit: Georgia mail-in ballot postage is unconstitutional
A federal lawsuit says that by requiring Georgia voters to provide their own stamps for mail-in ballots, the state is effectively imposing a poll tax
4:44PM ( 23 minutes ago )