EDSON, AB. – The 2012 race season may be over but the race to complete an important construction project continues west of Edmonton. With the sound of hammers and saws in the background, the Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series got a behind the scenes look at the Habitat for Humanity build site in Edson, Alberta. “We are very, very thankful to the way the racing community has adopted Habitat for Humanity,” says Alfred Nikolai, President of Habitat for Humanity Edmonton, “just having our logo on the race car was a big deal to us because it gets the word out about Habitat to so many more people.” NPP Late Model Series competitor Darin Borysko toured the impressive job site. “This place started as a barren field,” exclaims the driver of the Habitat for Humanity/All Weather Windows #35 Dodge, “my hats off to the volunteer coordinators and Habitat for Humanity. They have come a long way in a short time using volunteer workers. It really is amazing.” Borysko works for the Town of Edson’s Public Works department and was directly involved in the early stages of the 15 home project.
“This is the largest rural build in Canada,” says Nikolai, “we are so proud of the folks here and everybody that lives or works in Edson should be really proud of themselves.” Thanks to volunteers and community partners, 10 homes are currently in various stages of construction. “Yes it’s a challenge to build fifteen homes at once but it’s a wonderful opportunity because these fifteen homes are going to create an instant payback.” Each mortgage payment made by families is re-invested back into the community by Habitat for Humanity to build more homes. “We had originally hoped that we would have had 10 families in [their homes] before Christmas,” adds Nikolai, “but we’ve had a few hiccups. Namely the weather.” Record rainfall in June flooded the Habitat for Humanity Edson build site and brought constructions to a standstill for much of June and part of July. Ironically it was these same rains that wiped out two NPP Late Model Series race events and nearly cancelled a third. “We are racing the weather right now,” adds Nikolai, “winter is coming and we all know what happens in Alberta. We need to get the roofs on eight of the homes. We need to get all these homes insulated.”
A total of 10 Edson families have already met the qualifications to become homeowners through Habitat for Humanity. Nikolai says the need for affordable housing becomes more apparent the closer a project gets to completion. “With so many people looking for safe and affordable place to live, we expect to be inundated with applications [possibly fifty] for the final five homes.” The first of several low key but emotional ceremonies in Edson, where families receive keys to their brand new Habitat for Humanity homes, is expected in late January or early February.
HABITAT FOR HUMANITY BASIC GUIDELINES
– this is a hand-up and not a hand-out for families.
– each family works on their own home investing 500 hours of “sweat equity” as a down payment.
– mortgage payments (no interest) will not be more than 25 percent of a family’s income.
– families must be employed with stable incomes from $29,000 to $54,000 who are not able to purchase their own home.
HABITAT FOR HUMANITY – EDSON BUILD
Project Leader ——————— Karen Adam
Edson Site Supervisor———- Murray Perrin
Construction Leader———— David Stevens
Volunteer Coordinator——— Stephanie Hembrow
Fundraising Coordinator—— Yvonne Bayley
Family Support Coordinator-Avril Houstoun
Family Committee—————-Jack Drebit
Amenity/Food Coordinator—Lorna Imber
Team Leader Assistant——– Mike Lambregts
Team Leader Assistant——– Tien Youn
Publicity Coordinator———- Sandy Moore