Holston Habitat hosts groundbreaking for 282nd project

Becky Campbell • Feb 15, 2018 at 5:52 PM

Come Saturday, a local branch of a national organization will break ground on a new home for a Johnson City family that has dreamed of a place of their own for years. 

The project will also be breaking ground for Habitat for Humanity as it will welcome eight area faith-based groups whose members will help construct the house on Hamilton Street.

“With Christian and Muslim volunteers, this project brings different faith traditions together to accomplish a shared and faithful purpose,” Trish Patterson, community outreach coordinator for Holston Habitat, said. “In addition, three groups will volunteer for the first time with Holston Habitat. And when finished, this Faith Build home will be sold to Ryan and Olivia, who will purchase the home for their family using a 0 percent interest Habitat mortgage.”

In making the announcement for the Habitat Faith Build, Art Pearce, Holston Habitat’s executive director, said the groundbreaking will happen rain or shine as a way to “come together, get to know each other and help build something special in our community.”

Holston Habitat has been building homes or repairing homes for residents using volunteer labor and sweat equity from the homeowners to be since 1985. Ryan and Olivia’s home will be the 282nd residence house built or repaired by Holston Habitat since the organization formed in the Tri-Cities.

“We’re sure thankful that folks from each of these groups will work together and do what it takes to build a home for this family,” says Art Weekes, the Habitat Faith Build’s construction site supervisor. Weekes will direct the work of volunteers from Antioch Baptist, Calvary, Covenant Presbyterian, Grace Fellowship, Munsey United Methodist, Wesley Memorial United Methodist and University Parkway Baptist churches and the Northeast Tennessee Muslim Community over the next several months.

Most of the hundreds of volunteers will provide construction labor on the project, but many others will prepare and serve lunch each day, and offer prayers for each other and for the family, Patterson said.

Ryan and Olivia will turn the first shovels of dirt and begin the Faith Build.

“This new Habitat home is a dream come true for our family. We are so excited to get started,” the couple said.

Connie Whitaker, a Holston Habitat board member, said the group’s mission “is putting God’s love into action by working alongside homebuyers to provide a hand up, not a hand out.”

For more information about volunteering with Holston Habitat for Humanity, or about Holston Habitat’s home repair and homeownership programs, visit www.holstonhabitat.org or call 423-239-7689. Holston Habitat for Humanity is a non-profit equal housing opportunity builder, selling homes to qualified homebuyers at 0 percent interest loans. 

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