For more than 20 years, Meredith College students, faculty and staff have been volunteering with Habitat for Humanity. This spring, the first Habitat home to be fully funded by the Meredith community is nearly complete. The current projected date for completion is March 21, 2009.
A kick-off celebration at which attendees were able to sign two by four pieces of lumber for use in the home preceded the beginning of construction in September 2008. Since then, numerous volunteers have supported the effort.
“Seeing the entire Meredith community come together to build the Habitat house has been really incredible,” says Meredith Habitat for Humanity Chapter President Chelsea McGlaughlin, ’10. “It’s been a tremendous learning experience for everyone involved. We can’t wait to do it again.”
Her enthusiasm about the experience is shared by Collette Kinane, ’10, who said, “I love volunteering with Habitat. The supervisors are incredibly helpful and friendly and really willing to teach others the workings of building a house. It means a lot to work on a Habitat house, especially when you get to work with its future inhabitants. You really get to learn a lot about yourself and also about those who are working with you.”
For McGlaughlin, this experience has fulfilled a childhood desire. “Growing up, I remember watching Reba McEntire’s Habitat for Humanity commercials and wanting to get involved with the organization. As a freshman at Meredith, I was thrilled to find that we had a Habitat club. I fell in love with Habitat the first workday I attended.”
McGlaughlin became president of the chapter in the spring of 2008 and has since been involved with coordinating fundraisers, planning the groundbreaking celebration, designing and selling merchandise, brainstorming and carrying out publicity and many other tasks which help to keep the organization going.
Kinane enjoyed the experience of volunteering with the organization while in high school and couldn’t resist volunteering again. “I really just loved the entire Habitat experience, even when working on those two absolutely freezing Saturdays,” she said. “I like the people I’ve met, and those that I’ve gotten to know better. I think one of the many things I’ve taken away from this experience is the satisfaction of knowing that I helped build a house. I also took away experiential knowledge about building components and structures that will definitely be useful in my future career in historic preservation.”
Meredith’s Habitat Chapter began in the fall of 2006 when Hayley McPhail, ’08, began recruiting members, gaining SGA approval and raising money for a Meredith College Habitat for Humanity house.
Date Submitted: 2009-03-13
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