Durham Habitat – ‘Blitz like a girl’

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Blitz day 1 started on June 6 with just foundations.Durham Habitat celebrated the completion of its 2015 Home Builders Blitz on June 12. Two homes, two families, two local girl builders in just six days! Two more deserving homeowners now call Ashe Street home in Northeast Central Durham. 

The Blitz Build, part of a National Habitat event in which professional builders bring their teams to Habitat for a week, kicked off on June 6 at 8:30 a.m. with nothing more than two foundations in place.  In just 30 minutes, walls were raised and by the end of the first day the roof was up.

The pace was fast throughout the week, with build teams working from dawn until well past midnight on some days. By Friday at 8:30 a.m. both homes passed final inspection. And more than 100 gathered to celebrate and dedicate the homes on Friday at noon!

Habitat homebuyers Jaw and his wife, Maw, came to the site each day to watch the builders’ progress. The family all carved their initials into the wet driveway cement.These safe, decent and affordable Habitat homes will be purchased by the Ni/Ngeh and Parrish families. Jaw and Maw and their three sons are Durham residents from Burma. Monica Parrish grew up around the corner in Old East Durham, and is excited to soon move into her new home with her two girls.

Alaina Money of Garman Homes partnered to Blitz Build for the Parrish family and Maggie Douglas of Durham Building Company partnered with the Ni/Ngeh family. These amazing women adopted the tag line Blitz Like A Girl, and they called on their trade and business partners to donate materials and labor for the two homes.  Hundreds of partners participated, and made the Build appear easy.

Dedication days are always special! The Ni/Ngeh and Parrish families pictures with their builder partners, Durham Building Company and Garman Homes. Durham Habitat set up a hospitality tent across the street from the Build, and the tent became a community gathering point through the week. There were activities for neighborhood children.  Several impromptu town hall meetings took place, and at one point three self-proclaimed “mayors of East Durham” sat around the same table discussing the positive momentum in North East Central Durham.

Wednesday was Garman Homes President Alaina Money’s 40th birthday, which she celebrated on the Build site.  “There is no better place for Garman Homes to be,” she said. “Giving back is part of our DNA and the opportunity to connect with our trade partners on such a worthwhile endeavor is magnificent. We are so grateful to Habitat for the experience and plan to do it again next year!” Alaina blogged about her Habitat Blitz experience throughout the week on her blog,www.buildlikeagirl.com.

The Ni/Ngeh family’s Habitat Builders Blitz home is the first for Maggie Douglas, Durham Building Company’s sales manager. “This is the first home I have ever built,” she said. “I'm not only excited that it is a Habitat home, but also that it has brought our entire team together for the week, including our vendors who contributed so much of their time and energy. What an honor it is to be a part of this new beginning for two Durham families.”

Welcome home!Habitat affiliates in 23 states nationwide partnered with their local professional homebuilders to build, renovate or repair more than 200 homes for the Habitat Home Builders Blitz.

The Parrish girls are excited about their new home, and they love the bright blue door.“Homebuilders have a unique perspective on the importance of a strong, well-developed community, which makes them invaluable partners in Habitat’s work,” said Blake Strayhorn, executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Durham. “And thanks to the generous donation of these builders’ time and talent, these two families have the opportunity to realize the dream of homeownership.” 


Habitat Success Stories

Anita and her sister thought they were experiencing night sweats but realized that it was raining inside their home. Habitat partnered with Blue Cross Blue Shield to replace their roof. "I used to go to bed every night and the rain would be all over my face but not anymore. Thank you."