Group seeks help with home work

Published 6:00 am Friday, February 8, 2008

Habitat for Humanity of Lincoln County will soon begin clearingland in preparation for the construction of its 11th house to bebuilt in the county since 1996, and the organization is in direneed of volunteers to aid in the upcoming construction.

Peck Vaughn, chairman of the organization’s building committee,said Habitat for Humanity’s operations may be in jeopardy if morevolunteers are not recruited.

“It’s getting to where we can’t find volunteers to help us,” hesaid. “If more people don’t get involved, it’s gonna die.”

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Vaughn said it would take several months to complete the1,250-square-foot house at 407 Grenn St. with his current laborforce. If more volunteers were to join the project, he said it maytake as little as three months to complete the construction.

Not only does Habitat for Humanity need volunteers for labor, itneeds more bodies on the administrative side as well.

“We really need more people to come to our meetings,” Vaughnsaid. “And more people to sit on our board of directors.”

Vaughn is inviting any and all people interested in theorganization’s cause to begin attending its monthly meetings, heldthe first Tuesday of every month at the chamber of commerce at 5:30p.m.

Habitat for Humanity recruits most of its volunteers from areachurches, a source that Vaughn hopes to keep drawing from. Herecently approached the Baptist Men’s Rally, a function of theLincoln County Baptist Association, to request help.

Vaughn was able to enlist the aid of a few men for roofingduties, as well as a plumber, but the association does not send itsmembers en masse for projects as these. Volunteer recruiting isdone on a man-by-man basis.

“We just try to make our men available through individualchurches,” said Talmadge Smith, director of the association. “Mr.Vaughn received the support from a few men who said they would helpout, and that’s a real good thing.”

The Lincoln County Baptist Association also has its ownvolunteer efforts to oversee. The association is currentlyorganizing a trip to the Beasley home in the Heuck’s Retreatcommunity to help rebuild after a tornado swept through the area inDecember.

No matter what, Vaughn and his crew of approximately 30 plan toproceed with construction on the newest habitat house and seekadditional volunteers at the same time. Vaughn said volunteers hadto be at least 14 years old, and volunteers aged 14 to 18 would belimited on the amount of work they could do.

“They can help clean up and organize things for us,” Vaughn saidof any potential teenage recruits. “But they won’t be able to pickup a nail gun and go to work.”

Vaughn also pointed out that specialized workers, like plumbersand electricians, must be licensed through the city.

Once the home is complete, the organization will begin lookingfor a family to fill it.

“We decided to go ahead and build the house before we got aperson to live in it this time,” Vaughn said. “That way, wewouldn’t have to wait around – we could go ahead and getstarted.”

Vaughn said the average cost of building a Habitat house is$35,000, and much of this comes from donation, especially in theform of material such as lumber and paint. Vaughn pointed out that,contrary to popular belief, the recipient of the habitat house willnot receive a free home.

“A lot of people think we just build these homes and give ’emaway, but that’s not true,” he said. “Whoever moves into the housewill have to pay $265 per month.”