By Hailey Blevins
On Saturday, Habitat for Humanity held a home dedication for the Love family in the GreenWood Community.
“It was June 2 when I first came here. The project was well underway, but you had a huge trash pile. It’s come a long way,” Mark Ivey, assistant football coach at Appalachian State University, commented on the fifth home dedication.
Alex Hooker, the Executive Director, gave his well wishes to the new homeowners, “I hope you have a lot of happy days here. Congratulations to everybody else here for making this happen. It just shows you what some people are willing to do to help our neighbors.”
Everyone in attendance was in high spirits as they looked back over the efforts everyone had put in. The Appalachian State football team dedicated some of their free time to working with Habitat for Humanity on the Love home.
“It was good to be around the kids in a different area,” said Ivey. “I think some of them had never done this kind of work before, but they all enjoyed it because it was something they’d never done before.”
“That’s what Habitat does, [it] brings people together to build,” Allison Jennings, Director of Development, responded to Ivey.
Ed Tausche, the construction manager, also commented on the football team’s volunteering. “The football team came out this morning. Sometimes I have 20 volunteers from them, and I say to myself, man am I outnumbered. There’s a couple individuals who are here day in and day out as volunteers.”
According to their website, Habitat for Humanity’s mission is “Seeking to put God’s love into action, Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build home, community and hope.”
Lynette Orbovich’s speech reflected this mission, “Speaking on behalf of the board of directors, we were seeking to put God’s love into action. Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, communities and hope. I’m honored to be a part of Watauga County Habitat. Since our founding in 1987, Watauga County Habitat has built 27 homes, and it’s been with volunteer labor, land and materials that were donated or purchased at reduced cost and with love.”
Everyone was in agreement that the Love home was named accordingly. Members of the Love family spoke warmly of all who were involved in building their new home. Isabelle Love summed up their gratitude, saying, “I just want to say thank you all and thank you, Ed, for building and putting up with me. We love everybody. I want to thank God for each and every one and for this place. We just want to thank all the churches and all the staff and the ASU people and everybody. Be praying for us.”
The land for the GreenWood Community was purchased in 2008. After the ceremony, Hooker closed by announcing that they had paid off the loan for the land. He celebrated this by burning the mortgage. “10 years ago, we had the vision to start this subdivision, so we’re approaching halfway through it. [Where] we’re all standing here, this road will be extended. We bought this 20-acre piece, and this week, we were finally able to pay off the note on the land. So I brought the mortgage, and I’m going to burn it.”
Habitat for Humanity has a vision of a world where everyone has a decent place to live. “You can be sure that our goal is to build more homes in the near future to continue to meet the growing needs of families in Watauga County,” said Orbovich.
“Habitat for Humanity International has a vision that everyone, no matter who they are, deserves a safe and decent home. Today is just a small example of that. I think that vision is so very important right now with what’s happening in our country and around the world. Habitat for Humanity wants a safe home for everybody,” says Allison Jennings.