Women take a swing at construction for a cause
Women throughout the state have been making a difference over the past few months, proving that there’s no job too big. The Sussex County Women Build, an international Habitat for Humanity program, is getting a helping hand from the ladies, creating a comfortable, un-intimidating environment for women to learn construction skills while establishing connections throughout the community. Just last week, the Sussex County Women Build began their third project since 2007, promising another welcoming home for a qualified family.
“What these women do is amazing,” said Kathy Goodman, Women Build project leader. She accompanies Karen McGrath as leaders of the program, which plans to construct eight houses this year. Their newest project is a single-family home in Seaford’s Concord Village development. Over 200 homes throughout the country were built by Women Build volunteers in 2007.
“We have a core group of realtors who understand this industry,” added Goodman, who is a realtor with REMAX by the Sea. “Almost everyone involved realizes the impact the economy has on the housing market. And there are plenty others who have donated their time and effort.” Last Saturday, construction began on the new Seaford home, and despite the eight-degree weather, volunteers came out by the dozens. “We’re already growing,” said Goodman, “and the word is still spreading.” Construction of the home, including the walls, will continue this Saturday. The house costs roughly $110,000 to build, and support has been piling in from the community. Lowe’s Hardware sponsored a training session, while organizations, like the local women’s sorority, also took a stand to get involved. Construction is expected to reach completion by June.
The Women Build of Sussex County is the only one in Delaware, and draws volunteers from Wilmington, as well. “It’s pretty neat to have the project parallel something like the inauguration, too,” Goodman added. “Women Build challenges people to get out there and really make a difference in the lives of others.” In addition to the program, Goodman has helped with Habitat for Humanity projects in the past, including assembling homes in Louisiana, following the devastation left by Hurricane Katrina. “There’s something incredibly special about handing the front door keys over to someone for the first time,” she said. “I’ve seen people in tears, and it makes you feel good to know you were a part of the difference in their lives.”
For more information, including membership sign-up, and volunteering, visit www.sussexcountyhabitat.org. A link from the site provides more information about Women Build.