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Love More, Better: Habitat Build

Love More, Better: Habitat Build

We seek to serve the local community through the Austin Habitat for Humanity program, assisting in the building of homes alongside the families who will live there once completed. Twice a year, members of our church community participate on an Episcopal build or an all faith build in Austin. This past Saturday, October 1, we completed the first of two fall build days.

A recap of the day by parishioner Susan Kidwell:

This year’s recipient, Sutafe Weldermichael, is a pastor from Ethiopia who was chosen for a U.S. diversity visa. He came here in 2009 and has been working hard ever since, trying to establish himself so that he, along with his wife and 11-year old daughter can join him. Habitat for Humanity provided him with an opportunity to move out of a one-bedroom apartment so his family join him in Austin. Sutafe worked alongside the Good Shepherd volunteers on Saturday. A soft-spoken and humble man, he was clearly very
touched by all the people who pitched in to help with his house.

Click here to read more of Sutafe’s story: weldemichael-family-story-2016

Photo by Patricia Adams Photography

Nearly 20 Good Shepherd volunteers (12 builders and several Acolytes who prepared and served lunches) shingled nearly the entire roof, painted everything that needed to be painted on the exterior, and worked on fences and a shed.

“I don’t have any words for them. They are helping me solve my problem, and I am so very happy. I cannot wait to be in my new home with my family.” – Sutafe Weldermichael

Habitat for Humanity provides a unique opportunity for GS volunteers to go outside of our own neighborhoods and forge bonds with the greater Austin community. Most of us at GS are probably blessed with stable housing (and may even take it for granted), but for people like Sutafe, the prospect of home-ownership is transformational. The sacrifices Sutafe has made to provide his family with new opportunities in the U.S. are hard to imagine, so it was a real privilege to help make a difference in his life by spending part of a Saturday building a house. It was also wonderful to see Sutafe’s house going up in a neighborhood of other Habitat houses – including the one we helped build last year. Seeing children’s toys in the yards confirms that we aren’t just building houses, we building communities where families and neighbors can support each other as they work to build successful futures.

Photos by Patricia Adams Photography

 

 

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