Habitat for Humanity is famous for building homes but in Goldsboro an entire neighborhood is seeing new life.
Matthew Whittle Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity toured new homes on North Alabama Avenue as a part of the Marshall Street neighborhood project. “We will build a total of eleven houses. Right now we have nine that are either done or under construction. We built two on North Georgia Avenue, two on Marshall Street so far and we have five right here that we are working on.”
The home at 712 Alabama Avenue was finished months ago and 714 North Alabama Avenue is nearly finished. Volunteers worked on homes up the street while Whittle showed off the home at 714.
Some of the properties had homes. There was a triplex on one which was torn down years ago, there was a house at 714 Alabama Avenue which was torn down years ago according to Whittle.
“This was a residential neighborhood but it had fallen into disrepair.” The city of Goldsboro donated some lots and some were purchased by Habitat.
U.S. Congressman Greg Murphy toured the neighborhood this morning and said he was impressed at the combination of volunteer work and homeowner sweat equity. Future homeowners need to contribute a thousand dollars and hundreds of hours of work before they get their home.
“This is the perfect example of helping people up rather than handing things out, because you give people…because you require sweat equity and you require involvement of the individual.”
“You can count that the people will take care of this since they’re a new homeowner they’ve never experienced this before but the fact that that they have part of them invested in this, I think is a good requirement.”
Whittle expects the work to continue in the neighborhood. “Goldsboro has lots of properties which can be built on. We’re always in the market for properties whether in donation or purchase,” said Whittle.
Whittle’s group is still Habitat for Humanity of Goldsboro-Wayne but it is expanding its reach, taking on Lenoir County projects. Whittle points out it costs money to change names so the organization will likely stay as Habitat for Humanity-Wayne.
“We try to build where we can make a difference” North Alabama Street seems to show that Habitat difference.