“These brief but meaningful ceremonies present the opportunity, first, to honor the families who have worked hard to fulfill Habitat’s requirements and, second, to express appreciation to the sponsors and volunteer groups,” Tredway said.
Future Habitat homeowners John and Lauren Riley live in a rental house that is old. The cracked windows are covered with packing tape because they are so drafty. The result is high electric and gas bills. The money is needed elsewhere since they are the parents of three children from 13 to 1. Some of the electric outlets don’t work, and there are signs of mold in several rooms.
The couple moved to Tennessee from California because John Riley had a job offer to work with a good friend as a truck driver. He since hurt his back, so he stays home to care for the children. Lauren Riley found a job she loves and has already received a promotion to assistant supervisor in inventory control at Famous Footwear. As a one-income family, money is tight for the family of five, and the extra money they pay for utility costs could go toward building equity in a home and stability for their children. But they can’t afford a traditional mortgage.
“This Habitat home will be such a huge blessing to us. It will help us have more time together as a family and save money that we currently pay toward excessive utilities,” said Lauren Riley.
The couple attended Habitat’s homeownership classes and worked on the build site with their sponsors, Danny and Karen Dugan. This was the sixth home in Wilson County the Dugans sponsored.
“We are truly blessed to have this opportunity and are so grateful to our volunteers and to Habitat’s mission,” said Danny Dugan.
In addition to family and friends of the Dugans volunteering on the job site in Lebanon, other groups plan to help during the eight days that volunteers are needed. Employees from Bridgestone Distribution Center and Famous Footwear, as well as students from Pope John Paul II High School and Cumberland University, helped build the home.
The ceremony will be Sunday at 11 a.m. at the new home on Park Avenue in Lebanon.
Wilson Habitat for Humanity will begin its 77th home Oct. 6. For more information on how to sponsor a home or volunteer, contact Tredway at 615-964-6594. Wilson Habitat for Humanity also operates a retail store, the ReStore, at 606 E. Main St. in Lebanon.
Wilson Habitat for Humanity seeks to put God’s love into action by bringing people together to build homes, communities and hope. Prior to becoming homeowners, Habitat future homeowners attend home education classes, work at the build site and volunteer at Habitat’s retail outlet, the ReStore. The work of Habitat in Wilson County began in 1992, and Wilson Habitat has currently built 75 houses and renovated three that served 78 households. To request an application or to receive more information about Wilson Habitat for Humanity, call 615-964-6594 or visit habitatnashville.org/wilson.