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Building homes for the needy

By Stephanie Raygoza , The Daily Titan

1769 days ago   Article ID# 760943
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Habitat for Humanity Orange County

NEW YORK, NEW YORK (The Daily Titan) - The holiday season is a time to give back to local communities and others in need. Habitat for Humanity Orange County is providing just that with opportunities to build homes for low-income families in Fullerton.

“Not a lot of people can say they helped build a home for a family,” said Gladys Hernandez, manager of public relations for Habitat OC. “Every volunteer we get adds something special.”

Established in 2007, Habitat OC will be completing its final five homes at the end of the year and is continually looking for volunteers to hammer in final touches.

“Our main group is college students who can make their schedule,” Hernandez said. “We’ve had a lot of Cal State Fullerton fraternities and sororities come out especially during the summer.”

Habitat for Humanity was founded in 1976 and aims to end poverty housing worldwide by building affordable homes and selling them to displaced families who have inadequate housing. Habitat OC started in 1988 and has since seen the completion of 146 homes.

Located just a couple minutes away from CSUF, the nonprofit organization is currently building homes in western Placentia on Harbor Boulevard and Commonwealth Avenue. Volunteers consist of people who don’t have construction skills and range from local corporations, foundation, campuses and student organizations.

Having volunteered at his church throughout high school, freshman Michael Cervantes knows first hand the impact a lending hand can have on others.

“My family and I would go out to Tijuana, Mexico every weekend to help build a church for an underprivileged community,” Cervantes said. “The experience really changed my outlook on life and I think Habitat for Humanity can have the same potential for students here on campus.”

Hernandez said they are looking for volunteers to help out particularly during the week as weekends are generally when most volunteers come out and help. Habitat OC has been building in the current block for three years and will be giving families the keys to their homes in early January.

Volunteers are encouraged to bring family and friends to meet and work alongside the families who are receiving homes. Habitat OC has previously built homes for CSUF alumni and their families.

Political science major Sophia Gomez volunteered over Thanksgiving break to help feed the homeless in downtown Los Angeles and feels that all students should volunteer at least once during their college education.

“It’s more than just serving a plate of food or picking up a paint brush,” Gomez said. “It’s the feeling of giving back, helping a stranger you wouldn’t have come across with previously and seeing that glow in their face that’s makes the experience all the worth while.”

Copyright 2015 The Daily Titan   (Copyright Terms)
Updated 1769 days ago   Article ID# 760943

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