The Heart of Habitat for Humanity - Our FamiliesI have been associated with Habitat first as a volunteer, as have all of our staff members, then as a part-time employee, and for the past several years full-time.  A significant part of my position is as the Family Manager.  This means I work with our partner families, handling everything from the initial selection through to the day they pay off their mortgage.

Our Family Selection Committee, a group of dedicated volunteers, works diligently to ensure that families selected into our program are families who can succeed as homeowners.  Once selected a family puts in a minimum of 300 “sweat equity” hours working on building homes, in our ReStore, at events, and attending classes to learn how to be a successful homeowner.  Upon completion of their home build, we become their mortgage company.  I like to say that, “We are a mortgage company, but we are a compassionate mortgage company.”  Because we are able to handle our mortgages in-house we are able to keep the personal touch to help our families be successful.

The difference homeownership makes in the life of a child is almost beyond measuring.  Some things our partner children have said add to my job satisfaction.  Some examples: Upon getting her first “own room” a child went down on her knees and said, “Thank you, Jesus.”  “I have my own yard to play in now.”  “We can have a dog!”  Passing our building, “Look, Mommy, that’s the place that makes dreams come true.”  All of this plus the hugs I get pretty regularly make Habitat a place I can look forward to going to each day.