Shetima paves the way


“You build your own home, and then you get to live in it,” 

Shetima Roach, soon-to-be Habitat homeowner, shares as one of the best parts of the Habitat Homeownership Program, now that she is 20 hours away from completing her sweat equity hours.  

Before learning about Habitat, Shetima worked as a bus attendant for the School District of Philadelphia. She lived in a $900-a-monthone-bedroom apartment where her 9-year old sonZekhi had to sleep in the living room. She wanted to provide more for him space for him do all of his favorite activities such as a room to practice drumsa kitchen to help his mother cook, and a safe street to ride his bicycle 


One day, she volunteered to help family friend Nikkia, also a Habitat homeowner now living in Diamond Park, complete her sweat equity hours and construct her home. After learning about Habitat’s Homeownership Program, and accepting a new position as Building Engineer at work, Shetima knew she had the means to make this dream a reality for her and Zekhi. 

 “I want to leave Zekhi a will not a bill.” Through the power of homeownership, Shetima can provide her son the security she did not have as a child. Growing up in the projects in North and South Philadelphia, her family always rented and only ever had the necessities. Shetima is paving the way as a role model for her son by finishing culinary school and working tirelessly to become a homeowner. She hopes that this home will give her son some of the opportunities that she did not have as a child. 


“I love everything about Habitat! They helped me save money, build credit, and now become a homeowner! It is really a great program,” Shetima raves about the various opportunities and lessons Habitat taught her throughout this process. “Nothing will ever be handed to you, so you need to work for it.”  


Shetima looks forward to cooking Sunday dinners in her own kitchen. The small family grocery shops together and likes to make Mexican cuisine. Zekhi has picked up on his mother’s culinary skills and plans to help his mother in the kitchen. The duo is very excited to carry this tradition and create many more in a space of their own.