Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Why Habitat for Humanity By Jason Hoover

Habitat for Humanity is a non-profit Christian outreach that takes to heart Jesus’s command to clothe and shelter those in need. I became involved with HFH back in the mid 80’s when the church I was attending at the time tried to help start HFH in the Longview-Kelso area. I was a relatively new home owner and wanted to know more about house construction and repair methods for my house. I felt that HFH was a good opportunity for me to learn about home repair without paying the up front money to work on my own house. It provided a way for me to learn from people I thought would know more about construction than I did. What I learned was way beyond my initial goals.

I became involved with HFH because I was impressed with the way a local chapter was to be organized and its dedication to meeting a critical need: adequate affordable housing. HFH also is committed to sharing the gospel with the families and individuals receiving a home.  Homes are not given away as I had previously thought. Instead a new homeowner must commit to at least 500 hours of volunteer work for HFH, either on a house project or for the organization. The home is a purchased home, but with no interest charged on the loan. All money received in payments is recycled into new projects. There are relatively few paid positions in the organization, thus overhead costs are low and more money is available to lend at no interest.

I found that there are many ways to serve in HFH. Some of the ways are listed below:

Work on the actual construction of a house.
Making meals for the workers.
Work in the HFH office.
Volunteer to help support the family.
Provide the training the new homeowner might need such as budgeting, home care, chores, time management, cooking, cleaning, etc.
Helping the homeowner to take care of the physical needs of the house and family.
Praying for and with the new homeowners and
Sharing the gospel to those who ask, “Why are you working on this house for free?”
Serving on the various committees needed to build a home.

There are many other ways to serve the needs of our community through the HFH organization.

I really appreciated the fact that I did not have to know much to be able to be involved. The people that are in charge have always been helpful and try to find a place for any who have a willing heart.

If you  are interested in learning more about Habitat and its ministry here and around the world you can talk with me or I can get you in touch with others in the church that have served in some fashion, or contact the local organization to find out what services are needed.

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