Habitat helping single mother build a better future

Campaign, which comes to an end this month, challenges 100 women to donate $1,000 each

Growing up in an apartment with a hard-working single mom, all I ever wanted was for us to have a house. Not just a place to live, but a place that was ours – a home where we could paint the walls and not have to live with gold shag carpeting and noisy neighbours. But my mom, who runs her own graphic design business and is incredibly responsible with money, was told she couldn’t get a mortgage unless she had a husband or father to co-sign.

That experience is the reason I volunteer on the board of directors for Habitat for Humanity. Victoria has the second-most expensive housing market in the country and home ownership is out of reach for far too many hard-working families.

Take Amanda, a single mom of two young boys. Even though Amada has a stable job in health care, she’s had to uproot her family 10 times in the last 10 years because of unfit living conditions and increasingly unaffordable rents – at times spending up to 70 per cent of her income on housing. All those moves make it hard to build lasting friendships and feel connected to the community.

Habitat Victoria is hoping to change that by building a four-plex for Amanda and three other deserving families in Saanich. They’ll all receive interest-free loans from Habitat and mortgage payments will be based on income so they’re manageable.

“I never thought I’d be in a position to own my own home and provide this level of security for my family,” says Amanda. “My oldest son’s gone to four different schools already so being able to put down roots and have stability is a dream come true.”

Construction’s now under way on the four-plex, and instead of a down payment, Amanda is putting in 500 volunteer hours of ‘sweat equity’. Donated supplies help reduce construction costs, but $100,000 is needed to build Amanda’s home so Habitat launched the ‘100k in 100 days’ campaign.

The campaign, which comes to an end this month, is challenging 100 women to donate $1,000 each to help give Amanda a hand up, not a hand out. So far, more than 65 women have joined – including Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps, who is passionate about building affordable housing.

“What I love about Habitat is its ‘pay-it-forward’ model,” says Helps. “Mortgage payments go into a fund to help build the next Habitat home so more families can benefit.”

After growing up dreaming of having my own home, and fortunate to now have one to raise my children in, I’m also trying to pay-it-forward to help other families build a better future. Will you join me?

Find out more at: www.habitatvictoria.com/100.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(Black Press Media file photo)
Bylaw officers called to Saanich park for COVID-19 protocol violations on pickleball court

Raquet sport players reminded to avoid doubles play amid pandemic

Victoria police are asking for help locating Izabel Villeneuve, 14, who was last seen Jan. 19. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
Victoria police seek help locating missing 14-year-old

Izabel Villeneuve was last seen in the morning of Jan. 19

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the legislature, Jan. 11, 2021. (B.C. government)
Vancouver Island smashes COVID-19 high: 47 new cases in a day

Blowing past previous records, Vancouver Island is not matching B.C.s downward trend

The cost of potentially counting deer regionwide was among the issues that prompted Capital Regional District committee members to vote against pursuing a greater CRD role in deer management. (Black Press Media file photo)
Expanded deer management a non-starter for Greater Victoria

Capital Regional District committee maintains current level of support

Environment Canada is forecasting snow for the east Vancouver Island region the weekend of Jan. 23. (Black Press file)
Up to 15 cm of snow forecast for Vancouver Island this weekend

Snow on Malahat to begin Saturday night, according to Environment Canada

Businesses continue to struggle under COVID-19 restrictions as the pandemic reaches the one-year mark. (B.C. government)
Another 564 COVID-19 cases, mass vaccine plan coming Friday

15 more deaths, community cluster declared in Williams Lake

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Jan. 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

A specialized RCMP team is investigating a suspicious trailer, which might have connections to the illicit drug trade, found abandoned outside a Cache Creek motel. (Photo credit: <em>Journal</em> files)
Police probe U-Haul trailer linked to illicit drugs left outside Cache Creek motel

Hazardous materials found inside believed to be consistent with the production of illicit drugs

Premier John Horgan leaves the podium following his first press conference of the year as he comments on various questions from the media in the Press Gallery at B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, January 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

The B.C. NDP government sought legal advice as concerns of travel continue

Gem Lake Top, at Big White Ski Resort, seen at Jan. 8. (Big White Ski Resort)
Big White cancels $7.3M in lift tickets, accommodations due to COVID-19 orders

Since November, the ski resort has been forced to make several changes

Darlene Curylo scratched a $3M ticket, BCLC’s largest ever scratch and win prize. (BCLC)
Kelowna woman in shock after winning BCLC’s largest-ever instant-ticket prize

Darlene Curylo couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw the amount of money she’d won from a scratch ticket

While each person has different reasons for becoming homeless, a UBCO study shows they learn through their interactions with different services to perform ‘as homeless’ based on the expectations of service providers. (Contributed)
Kelowna homeless forced to ‘perform’ for resources, says UBCO study

One participant in the study said ‘It is about looking homeless, but not too homeless’

Aquaculture employee from Vancouver Island, Michelle, poses with a comment that she received on social media. Facebook group Women in Canadian Salmon Farming started an online campaign #enoughisenough to highlight the harassment they were facing online after debates about Discovery Islands fish farms intensified on social media. (Submitted photo)
Female aquaculture employees report online bullying, say divisive debate has turned sexist

Vancouver Island’s female aquaculture employees start #enoughisenough to address misogynistic comments aimed at them

Most Read