© Times-Herald photo by Nathan Liewicki
Kathy Bennett, right, along with her husband, Rob, and their two children, Hannah and Logan, squeezed into a crawl space in their new home Tuesday. The crawl space was signed by all the volunteers that helped to build Moose Jaw's fourth Habitat for Humanity build, which the Bennett family can now call their own home.
Family of four moves into Habitat for Humanity home
Hannah and Logan Bennett had a little dance party in Logan’s new bedroom.
“I picked it all by myself,” Logan said between dance moves.
Rob and Kathy Bennett might have been more excited than their kids to finally be moving into their new house Tuesday.
In April 2013, the family of four was selected to become the fourth recipient of a Habitat for Humanity Moose Jaw house. The sod was first turned on June 17 and nine months later they’re about to move in to their new home.
And they already have plans in mind for their backyard.
“I think this boy needs a trampoline, something to wear that energy down,” Rob said, while looking down at Logan.
Rob has always wanted to have a fishpond, so that is in the future plans for the family’s new backyard. So too is a garden, which Kathy is looking forward to calling her own.
With thoughts of building up their backyard to make it their own, Tuesday morning was all about the Bennett family giving thanks and showing gratitude to the more than 500 hours volunteers put into building the new home.
Kathy and Rob put in at least 300 hours themselves.
As such, a myriad of friends, Habitat staff, volunteers and dignitaries crowded into the kitchen and living room for the home’s dedication and handing over of the keys.
“This home really exemplifies what's best about the community of Moose Jaw, and being able to support each other to build a better life and a better future for families,” said Mayor Deb Higgins.
This latest Habitat build would not, however, have been possible without the help of the Saskatchewan Government, which was represented at the home’s grand opening by Moose Jaw Wakamow MLA Greg Lawrence.
Like Higgins, he talked about the tremendous community spirit that is associated with the commitment of volunteers, donors, partners and Habitat staff.
“The government has partnered with us now for many, many years and they give us $50,000 for every home that we build in the province,” said Rob Gartner, acting CEO of Habitat for Humanity Regina. “That enables us to continue breaking the cycle of poverty and helping families achieve that dream of home ownership.”
Gartner added that without $100,000 of support from Conexus Credit Union and $12,000 from Mosaic Potash, the completion of the Bennett home would not have been possible in only nine months.
Matt Dominguez, co-chair of the city’s Habitat chapter, was also on hand at Tuesday’s event.
As excited as Dominguez was for the Bennett family, he had a little fun with them.
“Everybody's home has a junk drawer. Everyone's got one, right? So I got some pens that will go in that junk drawer for you,” Dominguez said.
He also presented them with their home’s first magazine for their coffee table, as well as a cookbook.
Rob and Kathy were at a loss for words describing their thankfulness to everyone who played a role in helping them turn their dream into reality.
“I've met so many wonderful people throughout this journey that I don't even know what to say. It's been such a great experience,” said Kathy. “We would not have been presented this opportunity if it wasn't for Habitat.
"We have a safe and stable home to raise our children now, and we’re looking forward to this new chapter in our lives.”
Nathan Liewicki can be reached at 306-691-1256 or follow him on Twitter @liewicks