By Joe Lee
JACKSON – As Inora Glass looked up from the tree and limb removal all around her on a steamy Saturday morning in October, she was covered in dirt and leaves and felt hot, sticky and fatigued.
She also felt exceedingly grateful. The mother of a seven-year-old daughter, Glass was hard at work with a dozen Habitat for Humanity Mississippi Capital Area (HHMCA) volunteers, putting in the sweat equity required of any Habitat homeowner as the group worked to restore and rebuild the home at 534 Cedarhurst Drive of Jackson that she will take possession of in January.
“We were out there since October,” Glass said. “We tore down the front porch of the house and two sheds in the back. We pulled roots from the ground and took limbs from the trees in front and along the back fence. It looks so much better now.”
The Cedarhurst home was designated by HHMCA for the annual Catholic build. Many Jackson-area organizations and parishes joined in, including St. Richard Jackson, St. Paul Flowood and St. Dominic Hospital. All made funding donations and the parishes contributed bottled water, breakfast, and labor at various times toward the project.
“The Catholic Build is such an important build each year. We count on the continued support of the churches and the Diocese to make the build possible,” said Merrill McKewen, executive director of HHMCA. “This year the Catholic Build is rehabbing a home in the Broadmoor area which is very important to our promise of 100 houses in five years. We are so grateful for their hard work and generous funding.”
Glass worked side by side with volunteers on Saturdays for more than two months. She even joined them at the Habitat warehouse on Mitchell Avenue to paint when the weather turned inclement on a Saturday in November. She had a front-row seat for all aspects of the construction of the home, as well as the extensive training she received from the organization that will help her as a homeowner in the future.
“It feels great. The overall experience is wonderful,” Glass said of her interaction with Habitat and the friendships she has made. “We will close on the house in January and move in. The volunteers and everyone at Habitat have been so kind. I will always thank them for coming out and making my dream come true for me and my baby.”
“Inora Glass has an incredibly beautiful spirit and is truly grateful for Habitat,” said HHMCA volunteer coordinator Kimberly Crowder. “Her spirit also reminds me of why I love doing what I do.”
For more information, visit www.habitatmca.org.