Oklahoma City

Trip Start Nov 26, 2010
Trip End Nov 18, 2011

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Where I stayed
Springhill Suites, Moore Oklahoma

Flag of United States  , Oklahoma
Wednesday, March 2, 2011

     This week I am working with one of the largest Habitat affiliates in the US.  This affiliate was founded in 1988 and the current Exec. Director, Ann Felton, has served in that position since 1990.  Last week, they dedicated their 601st home.  They currently build approximately 60 simple, decent homes per year with a relatively small field construction staff.  The construction director, Aaron, who was cutting rafters on site today, has only three or four full time staff working with him contructing these 60 homes per years.   Aaron has been working for the affiliate for 16 years.  Something great about continuity. They also run two "Re-stores" (established in 1998) whose proceeds form selling donated surplus construction items and furniture is enough to fund seven homes per year.  The home I was working on today is in a development owned by Habitat called Hope Crossings.  It is made up of 59 acres that was donated four years ago.  As of today 127 families are calling Hope Crossings their home.  There is a capacity of 217 homesites.  What a great blessing to not have to constantly search for land upon which to build.  There is also a small crew of paid staff that runs a branch of the affiliate called Brush with Kindness that uses volunteers to do smaller repairs on existing homes, with Habitat furnishing the labor and materials and the homeowners "payback" is 60 hours of sweat equity working on other's homes.  Today was the last workday for an Americorp team of ten or so young folks who has been helping with the construction for the last 8 weeks.  They are based out of the Denver campus. Americorp NCCC is a great federally run program for young folks aged 18-24.  They sign up for a year commitment and then travel around the country in 15 passenger vans, living and working together doing service projects (such as Habitat) for four sessions during which time they are paid a small stipend for living expenses.  At the end of the year they receive a lump sump payment of 5 or 7 thousand dollars which can be applied to college expenses.  Great program.  
     Well, that's all for now.  Next stop Little Rock, Arkansas.  Next week.   Peter 
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