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Sep 26, 2003

Habitat for Humanity makes another dream come true

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It’s a housing programme that works: not only in Belize, but all over the world. I’m talking about Habitat for Humanity…and while the Habitat habit has yet to catch fire here, it remains one of the best avenues to home ownership for many low income Belizeans. This weekend, one more house will become a home.

Jacqueline Woods, Reporting

The three bedroom concrete house is the eighteenth building constructed in the past five years by Belize Habitat for Humanity.The programme targets families who live in substandard housing, but do not have the money to buy a new home.

Jerriann Frost, Homeowner

“Well, I was living by the apartment on Casuarina Street and it was not that nice. It had some leaking, so I saw the ad, and I applied.”

The housing project is unique because the construction is not only done on a voluntary basis, but the homeowners are very much involved in the work. Today, Jerriann Frost finished painting her new home as volunteers helped put in the ceiling, doors, and other fixtures.

Jerriann Frost

“It gave me a lot of experience, know what to do when you’re doing it basically that’s it. It feels good to be working on it.”

Although the home is valued at a modest twenty-six thousand dollars, not all families can afford it. According to the Belize City programme’s manager, Carla Sainsbury, they are now looking at a new model that will be even more accessible.

Carla Sainsbury, Programme Manager, Belize City

“We will be doing a little bit smaller house, because we’re trying to reach more poorer people. So we’ll be doing a house that costs a little bit less.”

Jacqueline Woods

“When you mean a smaller house, this is a three-bedroom house, so we’re talking about what, two-bedroom houses?”

Carla Sainsbury

“No, we’ll still do two and three bedroom houses, however, it’s going to be a little bit narrower. We’re going to be taking off four feet on the width of it and it won’t have a veranda, but it will be a little bit longer but it will cost less.”

Sainsbury says by June of 2004, they would have constructed a total of twenty-six houses in Belize City. Jacqueline Woods for News 5.

The Frost home, which is located in Lord’s Bank village in the Belize District, will be officially dedicated on Saturday.

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