AUSTIN, Texas (KXAN)— A bold move to draw attention to the need for affordable housing across the Lonestar state—lawmakers and volunteers are partnering with Habitat for Humanity Texas to build a home on display at the capitol grounds.
This is a part of ‘Day at the Dome Capitol Build. According to Habitat for Humanity Texas, 9 million Texans do not have access to proper shelter.
Habitat for Humanity Texas just launched a 3-year research project looking into affordable homes for families. ‘Day at the Dome’ is a part of that project. It plans to make this an annual event.
“I don’t know about [my sisters], but what I see is amazing…and wonderful…I didn’t know… this many people would be working for us,” Destiny, a 10-year-old said.
She and her two sisters—raised by their grandparents, have already envisioned what their new home will look like once it’s done.
“I think it’s gonna be like a mansion kind of, but with no stairs,” Destiny said.
All smiles Thursday, you wouldn’t be able to tell what these girls and their family have gone through. Their grandmother is a cancer survivor.
“I had breast cancer twice,” Vanessa Spruell said.
Spruell’s husband, George, is a disabled marine war vet. They’ve recently fallen on hard times.
“It just got to the point where we had to stay in a car,” George said.
The Spruell’s feel partnering with Habitat for Humanity to get a home has changed their lives forever.
“We’re not going to fall. We’re going to stay up…me and my husband–we’re going to look to the future for those girls,” Vanessa said.
According to Habitat for Humanity, Texas is short 500,000 homes based on current needs.
“One of the things that we’re really looking forward to is to set up a revolving loan fund that can help finance these houses faster,” Amy Ledbetter Parham, chief executive officer for Habitat for Humanity Texas said.
Habitat for Humanity is working to build more affordable homes, being the financer for families who pay what they can, not what it costs to build.
“The legislature could easily do is help us set up a revolving loan program with a workforce training component,” Ledbetter Parham said.
The home built on capitol grounds Thursday will be delivered to Killeen, Texas. There’ the Fort Hood Habitat for Humanity will finish construction by the end of the summer, and the home will be ready for the Spruell’s.
Any family who is a recipient of a home partnering with habitat helps build other recipients’ homes as well.