Next Habitat for Humanity home to be built in Winchester Springs

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by Brandon Mayer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

With the current ongoing housing crisis, the work of Habitat for Humanity is more important now than ever. Founded in 1976, Habitat for Humanity is an International not-for-profit organization that helps families in need work toward building their own, affordable home. The organization is made up of local chapters, such as the “Cornwall and the Counties” chapter, whose area includes North and South Dundas. 

On March 3, it was announced that the next “partner family” for this year’s build will be the Rumohr-Boisvert family, consisting of parents Zachary and Taylor, and children Marrisa, Zoe, Octavia, and Lincoln. The build will take place on the South Dundas side of Winchester Springs, on land donated by the Township of South Dundas, beginning this spring. This will mark the 17th build undertaken by the Cornwall and the Counties chapter of Habitat for Humanity, which began its work in 1998.

Contrary to what some might believe, Habitat for Humanity does not give away free homes. Those who benefit from a Habitat for Humanity home must be willing both to work for it, and to pay for it. The upfront cost of the home is covered by the organization. In lieu of a down payment, partner families agree to provide the organization with 500 volunteer hours. When the home is complete, they take on an interest free mortgage (provided by the organization itself) to fully pay for their own home in installments that never exceed 30% of their household income. The organization therefore provides relief from the pressures of saving up thousands of dollars for a down payment, and extra costs associated with interest, but the family has still earned and worked for their home.

Where does Habitat for Humanity receive its funding? The simple answer is, “the community.” The organization does not receive government funding, and instead relies on donations, fundraisers, and sponsors. The organization also operates locations of a discounted hardware store – the Habitat ReStore. The ReStore stocks only donated items, which exempts the store from having to charge customers tax. Proceeds from all sales are put toward the day-to-day operations of the organization, and these funds also contribute to the costs of home builds.

More about the local chapter of Habitat for Humanity can be learned at habitatcornwall.org.

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