Dedicating a new home is such a joyous event that we tend to forget about the uphill journey it takes our homeowners to reach this point. From the point a homeowner, like Shanrhonda, applies for our program until the day that we hand over the keys usually takes two years.
During those two years, our homeowners attend financial education classes, learn how to maintain their home, work in the office or ReStore, help build houses for other Habitat homeowners and then, finally, the finish line comes in sight when they are able to start building their very own home.
All of that work has to add up to 400 hours of what we call “sweat equity.” That’s 400 hours of time our new homeowner Shanrhonda committed to working with us, in addition to her other responsibilities—working full time at Barium Springs Home for Children and caring for two sons, Richard, 15, and Henry, 12.
There were times along this journey that Shanrhonda admits she wanted to give up. But two things kept her going—her boys and her faith.
“My sons saw me trying so hard, so I didn’t want to give up,” Shanrhonda said. “I wanted to show my boys what can happen when you work for it.”
She also relied on her favorite verse, Phillipians 4:13, which says, “I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.”
In this new home, Richard and Henry will have rooms of their own—rooms that they both helped paint. And when Shanrhonda crosses these floors carrying a load of laundry, she won’t help but remember—she laid these floors with her own hands.