Wednesday, April 16, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Habitat announces home dedication ceremony

Habitat for Humanity Yolo County plans a home dedication ceremony at 9 a.m. Saturday, July 16, for the recently completed Heidrick Ranch halfplex at 2204 Farmer’s Central Road in Woodland’s Spring Lake neighborhood.

“We have been working toward this moment since early 2007,” said Wayne Eckert, immediate past president of Habitat Yolo’s board of directors, in a news release. “This process began when E & L Corporation donated the two lots to (Habitat Yolo) in 2007.

“This ceremony represents the completion of these two homes and the welcoming home for our two new Habitat partner families: Agustin and Caritina Villalobos and their three children, and Teresa Allen and her three children.”

Diana Walker-Smith, Habitat Yolo’s executive director, said these homes “would not have been possible without the financial support of numerous corporations, foundations, businesses and individuals and without the volunteer efforts of over 1,000 individuals who helped build these two homes.”

“We raised money for these homes right up to the end,” she said. “The Home Depot grant of $10,000, which we received in early June, allowed us to finish these two homes.”

The Home Depot Foundation aims to improve homes and lives. Through partnerships with local nonprofits and the volunteer efforts of Team Depot, the foundation focuses on repairing and refurbishing homes and facilities that serve disadvantaged families and individuals.

After a Home Depot-sponsored Team Depot build day at the Heidrick Ranch homes, store managers Jeff Eder, Chet Gilmartin and Larry Snyder approached The Home Depot Foundation to support the Heidrick Ranch construction project.

Eder, store manager of the Arden Arcade Home Depot, had been moved by the presentation given by Walker-Smith, in which she described the families and their current living conditions. Eder contacted his counterparts in Woodland and West Sacramento, Gilmartin and Snyder, to help him pursue funding support through the foundation for these homes.

“We are grateful to Home Depot and all our funding partners for allowing us to build and complete these homes,” said Marty Swingle, Habitat Yolo board president. “We are inviting our funders, volunteers and the community to come and celebrate with us on the 16th.”

The Rev. Kristin Stoneking, director and campus minister for Cal Aggie Christian Association/CA House, will lead the invocation and will bless the homes.  Yolo County Supervisor Matt Rexroad and Woodland City Councilwoman Martie Dote will be among the dignitaries on hand for the ceremony.

“And, of course, our families will be there,” Swingle said. “The Allen and the Villalobos families exemplify why (Habitat Yolo) exists.”

Beginning in July, Habitat for Humanity Yolo County will initiate a home repair program for low-income, owner-occupied homes called A Brush With Kindness. The group also will seek infill lots on which to build new homes, and purchase homes to refurbish for new families in the Bryte/Broderick neighborhoods of West Sacramento.

A Brush With Kindness is Habitat’s new house-preservation initiative that will focus on minor repairs, wheelchair ramps, painting, weatherization and landscaping. This is a nationwide program serving low-income homeowners who struggle to maintain their homes.

Habitat’s infill and rehabilitation projects help take vacant land and homes within a community and transform them into decent, affordable housing for very-low income families. The goal with all these initiatives is to reinvest in these communities for the betterment of residents and Habitat homeowners alike.

The mission of Habitat’s local chapter is to provide safe, decent affordable homes for low-income families in Yolo County. Habitat homes are sold to partner families at no profit and financed by Habitat through affordable, no-interest loans.

Homeowners invest 500 hours of “sweat equity” into building their homes, working side by side with community members. Homeowners’ monthly payments are recycled into a revolving fund, which enables Habitat for Humanity Yolo County to build more homes.

For more information, contact Walker-Smith at (530) 668-4301 or hfhed@dcn.org.

Special to The Enterprise

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