New Habitat house brings family together
Life has changed significantly for a Whanga¯rei family after they received their own Habitat for Humanity home last year.
Ten prisoners were involved with the building of the house.
It was built at the Northern Region Correctional Facility in Ngawha and then lifted by crane over the wall and transported to Whanga¯ rei.
It’s a win win situation - the project prepares prisoners for a career in construction, while a family in need gets a home.
One year on from moving into their new home, Dana Phillips and her three children say they no longer have to contend with the daily stresses from living in substandard housing.
Phillips says she has been able to focus on providing stability for her family and spending quality time together.
‘‘My children love having a home to call their own, one where they feel safe and secure.’’
She says she feels the kids ‘‘are living a life all children should have the opportunity to have’’.
When the family applied for the house the children were all registered with Starship.
Nowadays, one has now been taken off this list and the other two have not suffered any major health problems for the last six months.
This has enabled the kids to participate in soccer, basketball, league and taekwondo and live a more active life.
Phillips’ nephew has now also joined the family home.
‘‘I can’t believe it’s been a year already.
‘‘This has been the best year in the 18 years that I have been a mother,’’ she says.
‘‘Our family has never been tighter. We do everything together now.
‘‘The things that used to stress me, like trying to keep the house warm and dry free of mould and dust allergens don’t exist anymore relief.’’
Phillips says it was thanks to a friend she made the application to Habitat.
Initially Phillips didn’t feel her situation ‘‘was as bad as some of the ones you hear about in the papers,’’ but her friend persisted and the result has changed their lives.
‘‘My heart has been filled with love,’’ she says.
❚ Got an inspiring story you’d like to share? Email some details to firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 09 4070362. - it is such a
Dana Phillips says their Habitat home has been life changing for her family.