FLUVANNA COUNTY, Va. (WVIR) - Down a long, gravel path called Charney Way, in the heart of Fluvanna County, you’ll find Habitat for Humanity volunteers building a new community for future home-owners.
On a 64-acre lot, with tools in hand, they’re building Houchens Place, a subdivision that will hold 26 Habitat Homes for those in need.
Mike Himes has been volunteering with Habitat for over a decade.
“I’d say the most exciting thing is the community coming together and working as a whole toward a single mission. In these days, you don’t see much of that and it’s really exciting,” Himes said. “It changes their lives. I just see the stability that owning a house has and the pride that they take in home ownership.”
Kim McDonald and her husband, along with Himes, are part of the build crew, called “Rusty Nailz.”
“Initially, I didn’t know that it was going to pull on my heart strings a little bit, I just wanted to be busy doing something,” McDonald said.
Their team is small, but mighty. Most of the time, the team is comprised of less than 10 people, due to COVID-19 restrictions. At one point, the team had to stop building altogether to keep people safe.
Now, they’re back on schedule, building two new houses each year that are affordable and eco-friendly.
“We formed a permanent conservation easement with 28.8 acres of our common area...no one else has done that in our area,” Himes said. “We are building a green development and our houses are extremely energy efficient.”
Volunteers like Himes and McDonald say they’re dedicating their free time to build, so more families can spend their time in their new home.
“No matter how insignificant we might think we are, every day you can do something important for people of the future generation,” McDonald said.
More information about home ownership opportunities and how to get involved with Fluvanna County’s Habitat for Humanity can be found here.