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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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B-CS Habitat for Humanity builds 250th home

 
 

Building a home requires planning, hard work and dedication.
Since 1989, Bryan-College Station Habitat for Humanity has built homes throughout the area, and on Saturday it began work on its 250th home for Riketra Johnson and her family.
“This being the 250th home in 25 years is a statement to the dedication of the community, the board of directors and obviously the staff,” said Denise Bermudez, president of the B-CS Habitat for Humanity board of directors. “Just the passion that they have to eliminate as much substandard housing as possible in our community.”
Johnson said this home is important because it’s going to be her own.
“I started back in 2000 and applied — this is my sixth time trying and I got accepted,” Johnson said. “It’s a lot of ups and downs and turns. It’s a lot to get a home, but they work with you. Not only are we going to live in it, we’re going to get the opportunity to help build our home.”
Jim Davis, former fisheries management professor at Texas A&M, has been involved with B-CS Habitat for about 25 years and said this house shows how much Habitat’s endeavors have grown in that time.
“When we started, we were building one, maybe two houses a year,” Davis said. “That’s very easy to handle. Finally it got to the place that they realized pulling everything together was more of a problem than they originally thought. The idea was to have people here to do the work, supervisors and materials all here at the same time, so that’s why they got me.”
Davis said he decided in 1998 to leave the university and work full-time with Habitat for Humanity.
“I do this because of the way I feel about the families that really need something that are willing to work,” Davis said. “They have to have 300 hours of work put in on other people’s houses. Three hundred hours that you put in on someone else’s house without getting a cent shows that you’re dedicated.”
Another development Habitat has seen over the years is the cooperation with the city on the projects it undertakes, Davis said.
“The city of Bryan now owns this property and they’re getting ready to come in and fix all the streets,” Davis said. “They get a certain amount of federal money each year through the Office of Housing and Urban Development. They have that money available so they will come to us saying ‘We’ve got X number of dollars to help you establish infrastructure.’”
Bermudez said the rewards of participating in Habitat far outweigh the efforts.
“Watching the physical structure of a house rise from a concrete slab, seeing families like the Johnsons blossom and thrive in their new homes and knowing that the positive impact made on each individual or family extends to the greater community makes it all worthwhile,” Bermudez said.
Members of Habitat for Humanity began raising walls on the group’s 250th home Saturday morning.
Photo by Cody Franklin

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