Habitat dedication is Sunday

Published 2:14 am Friday, February 26, 2016

Chuck Simon and Norma Riley work on planting at the Shelton home.  Josh Dutton/Star-News

Chuck Simon and Norma Riley work on planting at the Shelton home.
Josh Dutton/Star-News

Habitat for Humanity of Covington County will hold a dedication for the Shelton family house on Opp Avenue, on Sunday at 2 p.m.

“This is the sixth house that we have done in the county,” Habitat for Humanity of Covington County President Dale Pancake said. “We try to do at least one every year, and we do them throughout the county.”

Pancake said potential Habitat families attend meetings at which they they can learn more about Habitat and whether or not it is a right fit for them.

“We invite them to come sit in at meetings so that they can learn more about the process,” Pancake said. “They can then decide if they want to apply to become a partner family.”

A partner family is the term Habitat uses for families with whom they build homes.

“We call them partner families, because we partner up with them to help them become homeowners,” Pancake said. “The house isn’t free for them, but we have most of the supplies and labor donated to us and that helps make the house very affordable for the partner families.”

Along with being prepared to make monthly house payments, the partner family must put in 300 “sweat equity” hours.

“The partner families are required to do 300 hours of what we call “sweat equity,” Pancake said. “That is they have to help out with the process of their house, as well as the other houses that we do.”

Many local businesses and people help out to make the process possible, Pancake said. Carolina Millwork donates wood. Shaw donates vinyl flooring. Southeast Alabama Gas District donates water heaters. Wyatt Sasser is a contractor who contributes the time of himself and his crew. Scotty Woods is a cabinet installer who provides his time. The Covington County Master Gardeners donate their time and plants and many other volunteers donate their time as well.

The build for the Shelton home began in September and hundreds of people have chipped in to make the project a success.

“Our goal at Master Gardeners is to direct the energy of the people that love gardening to community service,” Master Gardener Chuck Simon said. “We help out every time Habitat for Humanity builds here in Covington County.”

Master Gardener Norma Riley said the “Shelton” house hasn’t been a difficult project.

“This house has been an easy one,” Riley said. “The Sheltons are gardeners as well, and they have decided that they want to do most of the planting themselves.”