There are a number of news sources and websites that claim home ownership makes for a better work force. Statistics reveal that it even enables stability, which makes it better to raise a family.That’s nothing new to the folks from the Trinity Habitat for Humanity (Habitat) as they prepare for the Parker County BuildStrong luncheon set for Thurs., Oct. 10, beginning at noon at North Side Baptist Church in Weatherford.The BuildStrong lunch is where Habitat seeks donations to help continue its mission which is building homes and “hope” in partnership with hard-working, low-income families. The goal, ultimately, is to create a sustainable funding program that builds each year.Linda Tingle, who oversees Habitat in Parker County, said the luncheon is both informational and inspirational.“At this event, individuals are given an opportunity to support the organization,” Tingle said. “All of the funds raised at the BuildStrong lunch are used to support our ‘Build-A-Home,’ new home construction, and ‘Preserve-A-Home,’ external rehab, programs.” This will be the fourth BuildStrong luncheon and Tingle’s hope is that it continues to inspire people to want to give and become involved with Trinity Habitat.“It’s gratifying to me to be able to help,” Tingle said. “It’s not for just single moms but for a host of other people and families that need our assistance.”Speaking first-hand, Tingle said that there was a time in her life, as a single mother of three, that she would have reached out to Habitat had it existed at the time. Now, in her 18th year of being involved with Habitat, she said it’s always special to see volunteers and homeowners come together to work on a project.“All of the people it takes to make this happen - all volunteer - it’s so special,” she said. “Even though it is challenging sometimes, it’s so well worth it.”She said a “Lead” or “Challenge Gift” serves as inspiration, along with hearing personal stories from several homeowner families about how owning their home has had a positive and lasting impact on their family.Tingle said there is no requirement that anyone give at the event, however, her team needs to raise about $76,000 in order to build a house.“We still need about $7,000 for the house we’re about to begin.,” she said. “But, as much as anything, we want people to come and find out about the great work we do.”The build this year marks the 10th Habitat home built in Weatherford and the 12th in Parker County. The homes new occupant will be Alisha Evans, who will be working alongside volunteers as part of what Habitat calls her “sweat equity.”Evans said it was a dream come true."We are currently living in low-income apartments,” she said. “I’ve never owned a home before.”In her Habitat profile, she describes her neighbors as “nice,” but have to be watched. “You never know who is moving in so I have stressed to my daughters not to speak to anyone they don't know and always keep the doors locked,” she stated. “Owning a home will make a difference in my life because it will show my family that if you work hard you can achieve anything.”Evans said she has always expressed to her daughters that “if you work hard, you will be rewarded.”“It may not be today, tomorrow, a month or in five years but, one day, God rewards you," she said. Tingle hopes to get the house in dry before Christmas and expects completion sometime in the spring of 2014.If you would like to attend the lunch Oct. 10 or volunteer on the Build beginning Oct. 16, please contact Tingle 817-614-1061 or e-mail Ltingle@Stewart.comFacts about Trinity Habitat for HumanitySince 1989, Trinity Habitat has partnered with 783 families, 500 sponsors and almost 160,000 volunteers to:• Build 415 safe, decent and affordable homes in Johnson (33), Parker (7), Tarrant (371) and Wise (4) counties, in 15 communities;• Rehabilitate 368 homes;• Accumulate over 789,180 volunteer hours and 123,300 sweat equity hours at a value of $13,997,443.20, according to Independent Sector (@ $15.34/hour national average over 21 years.Habitat is the eighth largest homebuilder in the United States (according to Builder Magazine's 2009 Builder 100).Collectively, Trinity Habitat for Humanity homeowners pay more than $460,000 in property taxes annually. Habitat houses are sold to partner families at no profit and zero percent interest. Mortgage length is an average of 30 years. Mortgage payments average $400-$500 per month, including taxes and insurance.ReStores:• Habitat ReStores are retail outlets where used and new building materials are sold at a fraction of normal prices.• Proceeds from the stores help Habitat's mission of building more homes. ReStores also help the environment by re-channeling good, usable materials into use.• Three ReStores have grossed more than $7,700,000 in ReStore sales since opening in 1995.• Over 17 million pounds or 8,500 tons of materials have been kept out of landfills and sold at three ReStores.Families are approved based on:• A need for a decent, affordable home;• Have an ability to pay for their homes;• A willingness to partner - working 250 sweat equity hours on their home and other Habitat projects.
Lance Winter, 817-594-9902, Ext. 102 Twitter: @Lancewinter