Local churches are being asked to help support Habitat for Humanity of DeKalb County.
Habitat has constructed four DeKalb County homes in recent years and has announced plans to build one for the fifth partner family, the Tia Adock family. Construction will begin this spring on the Adcock home on Hayes Street.
Letters have been sent to churches in DeKalb County asking for their help to build future homes. "The letters I am sending out are seeking to get cooperation among the churches in our area to help fund it (Habitat) because before we give out interest free loans, we must have the money to build the house. The house costs right at $50,000 plus the cost of the real property. What we're after right now is getting that $50,000 ahead so that we can build the home and then they (partner family) can move in," said Dr. John Carpenter, Church-Community Chair for Habitat for Humanity of DeKalb County.
Congregations may send money or commit to providing volunteer labor when it's time to build the next Habitat home. "From the smaller churches, if you could just take out one offering and send whatever you get to our address which is Habitat for Humanity. PO Box 750, Smithville, TN 37166," said Dr. Carpenter.
"Suppose you're part of a church that couldn't afford to do so (provide funding). There are still a couple of other options. When the Habitat for Humanity House is built in April 2014, you could provide volunteers to help. They don't need experience building homes because there will be professionals there guiding us. Or if you don't have the volunteers that can do so, you could also provide lunches for the volunteers as we help build the house," Dr. Carpenter continued.
Residents of a Habitat for Humanity Home must meet certain requirements. Partner families must complete a minimum number of volunteer hours in either building other Habitat Homes or doing community service; show evidence of being financially responsible; have further financial training before moving in; and, be taught how to make basic repairs on their homes, etc.
"The amazing thing is many times people will pay less on the Habitat for Humanity home loan than they presently pay in rent," said Dr. Carpenter.
"Habitat for Humanity is an organization founded by Millard Fuller and his wife Linda. They found a deep purpose of their lives by making it possible for more people to own their own homes. They did this as much as possible by having professionally-supervised volunteer labor to reduce the cost and, in addition to that, gave home loans with no interest. Scripture speaks about that in Deuteronomy 23:19-20 where it states "Don't charge interest to your kinsmen on any loan. Not for money or food or clothing or anything else." Their organization did that and later became known as Habitat for Humanity", Dr. Carpenter concluded.
For more information, call Dr. Carpenter at 615-597-4961. He is the pastor of the Smithville First United Methodist Church and the Bright Hill United Methodist Church.