110 W. New York Ave.
DeLand, FL 32720
By Pat Andrews
posted Jan 2, 2013 - 6:46:35am
There’s no place like home for the holidays. Now, Janet Nosker and her mother have a home in DeLand — and just in time for the holidays, thanks to West Volusia Habitat for Humanity.
“While there is always something special about dedicating a new home to a deserving partner family, it is just a little more special when it happens just a few days before Christmas,” Habitat Executive Director Peter deVos told The Beacon.
The house came ready for Christmas, with a Christmas wreath, a Bible, and a handmade quilt presented to Nosker during the joyous dedication ceremony that also included a blessing of the house.
The houses aren’t free.
The recipient must put “sweat equity” — his or her own labor — into the house, working alongside Habitat for Humanity volunteer builders.
That’s not the only requirement. To be considered for a Habitat for Humanity House, an applicant must be employed, with a steady income, and able to qualify for the no-interest loan on the home.
That’s difficult for a lot of the working poor these days. Recently, one family was forced to withdraw from the program just 10 days before closing on a home, after the prospective homeowner lost a job after 16 years of employment, and couldn’t afford the house, deVos said.
That’s too bad, because most Habitat families find their mortgage payments are considerably less than they had been paying in rent, often for undesirable housing.
Habitat for Humanity has been hit by the recession, too.
“We currently have the land we need to build on and volunteers willing and able to build, but the funding and finding more qualified homeowner families has been very challenging in this economy,” Habitat President-elect Ed Mallory said.
Nevertheless, West Volusia Habitat for Humanity has been able to put seven new homeowners into their own homes during 2011-12, he said.
For more information about volunteering or becoming a West Volusia Habitat for Humanity homeowner, call 386-734-7268, or stop by the office at 604 S. Spring Garden Ave. in DeLand.
Habitat for Humanity International is a nonprofit, ecumenical Christian ministry founded on the conviction that every man, woman and child should have a decent, safe and affordable place to live. Millard and Linda Fuller founded the organization in 1976. Today, it’s at the forefront of addressing housing needs of the impoverished.
Individuals, corporations, faith groups and others provide financial support.
The West Volusia affiliate was founded in 1988, with its first house completed in Barberville in 1989.
Visit the affiliate’s website at www.wvhfh.org, or the international site online at www.habitat.org.
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