DOBSON — The Greater Mount Airy Habitat for Humanity not only offered a hand up Sunday for a family, it gave them a hug and welcome to the community.
Unity Church of Ararat’s the Rev. Buford Jessup opened up the home dedication for the Michael Thomas family by reminding those attending the Bible’s Psalm 127 teaches a house built without God was constructed in vain and would not stand.
“I’ve read a lot about Habitat for Humanity,” said Jessup. “If I know my own heart I know that Habitat is an extended arm of God for serving the needs of God’s people. I am certain today I feel this house has been built on a solid foundation just as Christians must build their life on a daily basis.”
Habitat Executive Director Lynn Wilkes told the group this was the eighth home build by Habitat in the community. She said it was definitely a very special day for everyone involved. Dobson Town Manager Josh Smith also addressed the crowd.
“I’ll offer the Thomas family my no strings attached offer,” said Smith. “I want them to focus on community members around them. I want them to make a difference in the lives of their fellow community members every day without expecting anything in return. Do this because it’s the right thing to do. No strings attached.”
Smith recognized those who had contributed their time to make the home possible. Bonnie and Michael Thomas were then presented with the keys to the home by Habitat Construction Manager Greg Russo.
“I want to thank everyone who came out here and busted some knuckles t make this possible,” said Michael Thomas. “Words can’t describe this. Thank you.” Thomas’ son, Shawn, and his daughter, Savannah, also will live in the home.
After the ceremony, Habitat Financial Director Sheree Russo said that a common misconception in the pubic is Habitat for Humanity is a handout program.
“These families are getting a hand up. They must contribute sweat equity building their home as well as pay a zero-interest mortgage,” said Russo. “These families now must contribute 150 hours of sweat equity working on the homes of others in addition to work on their own home.” Russo said the three bedroom, one bath home for the Thomas family was started in mid-June. It’s closing is scheduled for Nov. 8. Two other homes in the development were started in August.
According to Greg Russo, the home also is built to the exacting standards required to be Energy Star Certified. This insures a healthier, sustainable home with a high degree of energy efficiency. He said Habitat homes use water saving faucets and low water flow toilets.
The home dedicated Sunday features a sealed crawlspace underneath that uses new insulating materials. This eliminates the need to vent the crawlspace walls and a clean, dry space for air exchange with the heat pump is created. Russo said the crawlspace area remains the same temperature as the home and can be kept dry in moist conditions with a dehumidifier.
He added that many homeowners are so pleased with this dry and temperature constant space, they use it to store clothing that is traditionally kept in the attic. This system also allows the area under the floors to not need insulation which leaves open plumbing and electric lines for easy repair.
Persons interested in volunteering for Habitat for Humanity may contact volunteer coordinator Alice Burgess at 789-4663.
Reach David Broyles at email@example.com o r 719-1952.