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It takes a village. You have probably heard those words many times before. More than ever, I believe they are true.

 

Let me tell you a story: over 20 years ago I got a phone call from a friend of mine asking me if Habitat for Humanity could do anything for a family she was working with in her role as a social worker.  This family was on the verge of losing custody of their children because they lacked proper housing. At the time, I was on the board of the Maumee Valley Habitat so I went out to meet this family to see if there was something Habitat could do. There was no electricity and no running water, so I met with them in their tiny yard and, to tell you the truth, I was a little afraid to drink the cup of water offered by their eight-year-old daughter, while her two-year-old brother played at my feet. It was clear to me they were a loving family, but how they could even live there was beyond me.

 

Click on the pdf link for a Sponsorship packet.

While the family had stable income thanks to the mother’s minimum wage job and her disabled husband’s social security, they did not qualify for a conventional loan, nor could they secure a decent rental home given their income was so low. However, they qualified for Habitat’s home program – where homebuyers help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage.  At the end of the year when their home was completed - and with too many tears to count - Mindy, the eight-year-old daughter whose school bus went right past her old, dilapidated house everyday said, “Now the kids won’t be able to make fun of me.” She even had a sleepover for the very first time. And, of course, the family was able to stay together. While this is an extreme case, it shines a light on a much bigger issue: in America and Ohio specifically, there is an affordable housing crisis. A single mother would have to work 76 hours at minimum wage - almost two full time jobs - to afford a two-bedroom home at fair market rate, if she could find it. Often these rental homes are not safe or in good condition.

 

Habitat for Humanity is a Hand-Up, not a Hand-Out as our families work hard putting in “sweat equity” hours, paying an affordable mortgage on time, partnering by providing documents, and many times helping others build their homes. Some of our families are doing this while working, caring for children, and going to school. Wow!

 

 In Fall of 2024 (September-November), I am doing a Biking for Builds ride across the Southern Tier of the US that will take almost three months, 3,500 miles, 100,995 feet of elevation change, and span eight states. My hope is to raise funds for the development of a 10-acre Habitat subdivision, located just outside of Oak Harbor, Ohio, where approximately 18 homes will be built over the next eight years.

 

My goal is as high as the elevation - $500,000! My inspiration is in knowing how lives will be changed as we build houses that build security, build futures, and build this country as a better place for all!

I believe we are the village that can change lives! Every dollar raised will go towards the subdivision project. More information can be found in the attached Biking for Builds Sponsorship packet. I encourage you to join me on my adventure and together, let’s make a difference in the lives of those who deserve a safe, affordable place to call home.

 

 

Sincerely,    

                                 

Pastor Becky Bolander

Board President

Click on the QR Code to Donate

Thank you Sponsors!

Bronze Sponsorship

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Supporting Sponsor

Friends of Habitat Sponsors

Tim Konieczny

Our Vision: A world where everyone has a decent place to live. 

Our Mission: Seeking to put God’s love into action, Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, communities and hope.

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