I am eight months into my year of service with AmeriCorps at Habitat for Humanity Philadelphia. Working with the Repairs Team, I get to learn new skills and am giving back. It’s amazing that the things that seem little to me are huge and life-changing for the homeowners that I work alongside.
I worked on a repair project where the roof had leaked and rotted out the kitchen, cabinets, and the floor. When everything was done, the homeowner shed tears of joy. It really showed how big of a deal Habitat’s work is for people. All of the Repair Team left with tear drops on our red staff shirts that day!
My mom is proud because she can tell that I am truly happy with this work. I have learned enough skills to launch my own drywall business, Holemies. Catch me after this to grab my business card!
I’m almost finished with my first big project at my cousin’s house. Working on the Repair Team has helped me get a better understanding on what I want to study when I do go to college. I still feel I have a lot to learn, so I think another year of AmeriCorps may be in the cards for me. I am even considering a year with AmeriCorps somewhere different like Hawaii. It’s a personal goal of mine to be able to travel and see as much of the world as I can, so it would be amazing to combine these experiences.
I love the challenge of repairs. The work is hard, and it’s never the same day twice. I remember my sister talking about trying to hide in the shade while helping my mom with sweat equity hours, so I should have known Habitat is a challenge! We have to find creative ways to remedy issues in homeowner’s houses. At the end of the day, I get to see the impact of my work on not just the home, but on the homeowners themselves.
It’s pretty cool for me to have grown up in a Habitat home and be a member of the Habitat Home Repair Team. It’s motivating to be part of the impact Habitat has on the neighborhoods around me.
One of my proudest moments was being able to give HUD Regional Administrator Joseph DeFelice, a tour of the home where Habitat completed our 500th home repair in Sharswood. I had just repaired Ms. Marabelle’s bannister, and I was so proud of the work. He was so impressed with my commitment.
Ms. Marabelle lives at 23rd and Oxford Streets, where our new construction team will break ground on 20 new Habitat homes next week. Habitat’s work in Sharswood is bigger than repairs and new homes. Our neighborhood revitalization work there ties everything together, where more families will benefit and the whole community is lifted up.
That is my Habitat story.
Here is what Habitat’s neighborhood revitalization story is all about.”