Elaine sent the following to our office early in 2020. With her permission, we are glad to share it with you.
My name is Elaine. I am a wife and mother of 5 beautiful children. I work full time, as does my husband, and we own our own home here in Pierce County.
Rewind to 2011. I was a 24 year old, single, working mother of 2 children. My daughter was 4 and my son was 1 at the time. During my daughter’s short life, we had moved a total of 5 times! Each were different rentals in pierce county, for various reasons, some were junky properties, some were too expensive, some had mold etc.
My mom told me about Habitat for Humanity and I didn’t pay much attention to her when she was encouraging me to apply… However, she wouldn’t let it go, so I eventually looked more into. I went to a homeowner’s class and it seemed like a good opportunity, so I continued working the program. After one year of taking various classes and volunteering 500 hours of sweat equity into building my own home and helping with my neighbors homes, I received the keys to my very own home in 2012!
I will never forget that day, because, I wasn’t just given the keys, Habitat had a personalized home dedication for myself and the kids. There were various members of the community, including a local grocery store that gave me and my family a $200 gift certificate to their store. We received a handmade quilt from a local church and just all around a lot of support. It was a very special day for the kids and I.
In 2011, when I started this journey, owning a home was not something I even had on my mind. I was simply looking for an affordable, decent home to rent. Habitat completely changed mine and my kids’ lives for the better. Having an affordable mortgage allowed me to put my kids through sports, financially support my family, without the stress of depending on anyone else. I was able to focus on being a mother, instead of stressing about finances and looking for a new home every time my lease was up.
Having stability was a huge blessing, my kids were able to stay at the same school and create friendships in our neighborhood. Our neighborhood consisted of 13 homes, all Habitat, most of which had kids around the same age. These kids have literally grown up together for the past 7 years and have played every summer night until our street lights came on. That by far, has been the biggest blessing of all.
Buying a home through Habitat for Humanity was easily, one of the best decisions I have ever made. I am now happily married and between my husband and I, we have 5 kids. We have definitely outgrown our 3 bedroom home, which has now led me to one of the hardest decision I’ve had to make and that is, to sell our home. It has been with mixed emotions that this decision has finally been made.
I am not writing this because anyone has asked me to, I am simply writing this out of my gratitude for Habitat for Humanity and every business and individual that has dedicated their time and or money to this program. It truly has changed mine and my kids’ lives for the better and we will forever be grateful.
To read more about Elaine’s journey, click here.