AmeriCorps and Habitat for Humanity Volunteers 10th Anniversary Katrina Home

It’s been ten years since Katrina ripped apart the Coast and Habitat for Humanity and AmeriCorps volunteers are still helping to put it back together. News 25 spoke with a soon-to-be homeowner who will be moving into AmeriCorps and Habitat’s 10th anniversary of Katrina home.
Stacey Toles remembers Katrina like it was yesterday. “No power for months. No light, no air, it was just survival mode.”
The single mother of two has dreamed of owning her own home. That dream will soon come true when AmeriCorps and Habitat for Humanity hand her keys to their newly built 10th anniversary Katrina home. “I really thought it was a joke, I’m like, really me? You know, you just never know that people actually care and you just do what you normally do just working hard to provide for your family and people actually remember that. So, it’s a blessing,” said Toles.
Habitat and AmeriCorps went from building 30 to 40 houses a year to just one at a time. AmeriCorps Team Leader Maggie Mayer said, “Coming down here and being able to be a part of that and building a house for someone who lived through the hurricane and was in the area at the time is an incredible feeling.”
Many building codes were put in place as a result of Katrina but AmeriCorps and Habitat are going beyond those codes, so that in the case of another Katrina, the house doesn’t go anywhere.
Habitat for Humanity Construction Manager Ryan Rupp said, “We don’t expect them to receive no damage at all, everybody gets banged up in a storm but we’re hoping to keep the family in the house post storm.”
As for Stacey, she’s just happy to finally have somewhere permanent she and her boys can call home. “God bless everyone that came out and took the time out of their day to come and help. I really appreciate it and I won’t let anybody down. I’ll take really good care of the home, but it’s really a blessing, a dream come true.”
The family is expected to move into the home in September.

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