Homeownership is Just Around the Corner
Hanover Habitat for Humanity offers a “hand up” not a “hand out” to our homeowners who are hardworking families who through no fault of their own struggle to make ends meet. It is a proven fact that homeownership has a significant impact on net worth, educational achievement, civic participation, health, and an overall quality of life. Strong and stable homes help build strong and stable communities.
Home #65: The Htoo Family
Bar and Nwe Htoo will be Hanover Habitat’s 65th homebuyers. After giving birth to their first child in Thailand they moved from Burma to the United States. They have been living in America for 10 years and have been residents of Hanover County for the last 3 years. Bar works in the produce department of a grocery store and Nwe works in dining at a local retirement community.
The Htoo’s are raising their three sons in Mechanicsville. All three boys have future plans of attending college. William (7) dreams of being a doctor, Eh Jay (9) wants to be a police officer, and Jay Soe (13) says he would like to be a teacher. While the youngest boys like playing soccer, they spend most of their time playing video games. As a family, they enjoy going to the river and fishing.
Bar and Nwe grew tired of spending more than they could afford to rent a house. Bar said it was “too expensive” to buy a home. They heard about Hanover Habitat from Ler and Lay Htoo, Hanover Habitat homeowners since 2012. Feeling encouraged they applied and were accepted into the homeownership program.
They are looking forward to having an affordable monthly mortgage. They are happy to be staying in Mechanicsville, an area they are familiar with. Ultimately, owning their own home will mean stability and self-reliance for their family.
Home #64: The Shuler Family
Kimberly Shuler will be Hanover Habitat’s 64th homebuyer. She grew up in Hanover County. She loves the area and wants to stay close to her parents while raising her young family. She is a strong, hardworking mother who works in gift wrap and packaging for a large fulfillment center.
She is raising her two children in Mechanicsville. Lathan (6) is in 1st grade and loves to play sports. He wants to be a police officer when he grows up. McKenzie (4) is in Pre-K and is very outgoing. They love visiting local parks in the community. As a family, they attend Greenwood Church.
Kim grew tired of spending more than she could afford for her apartment. The everyday struggle of managing her finances was a burden. Kim says she felt “tied down” by her bills and expenses. She heard about Hanover Habitat for Humanity from Rick Holzbach, the ReStore manager. She applied and was accepted into the homeownership program.
She is looking forward to having an affordable monthly mortgage that will allow her to provide more for her kids. Kim says that owning a home will mean “having a place that will always be ours.” Ultimately it will mean stability and self-reliance for Kim and her family.
Home #63: The Glasco Family
Shera Glasco has lived in Hanover County for her entire life and is now raising her two daughters in Ashland. Her extended family lives here as well and they love being a part of the Ashland community. They attend their local church, the Ashland Church of God and Shera works in Ashland, where she has a steady job as a restaurant manager. She started working in the same restaurant over ten years ago where she worked her way up from server, to a shift manager, and is now a member of senior management staff. Although Shera can’t imagine any other place being “home” for her and her girls, it has been extremely difficult for the family to find affordable housing in Hanover County.
When Shera applied for the Hanover Habitat program, they were living with family in extremely overcrowded conditions. It has been challenging for Shera to provide a stable learning and growing environment for her daughters in this type of atmosphere, where her daughters don’t even have a bedroom of their own.
Since first applying for the program, Shera has worked hard to get to the point where she is ready to purchase a home. She and her daughters can’t wait to start construction in Ashland this fall. To Shera, owning a home will mean a sense of pride and accomplishment, a constant reminder of how far she has come. Most importantly, it will mean a stable environment for her daughters to grow up.
Home #62: The Hetrick Family
Laura Hetrick is a hardworking mother raising her two sons in Mechanicsville. Laura grew up in Ashland and lived most of her life here in Hanover County. When she had children she relocated to King William. When she became a single mother a few years ago, she returned to Hanover County, seeking the support of family and friends, better schools and a more stable life for her children.
It was not easy to relocate two children and learn how to make ends meet as a single mother, but Laura worked hard and persevered. She got a job working nights at a hotel in Ashland, and has been steadily employed there for two years. Despite her hard work and success, Laura, like many others in Hanover County, still found herself struggling to find decent and affordable housing.
Living in an overpriced and overcrowded apartment that was in a regular state of disrepair, Laura worried about having to move to another rental. She did not want to put her youngest son through another move and risk having to switch his school yet again. This is when Laura learned about Hanover Habitat.
Laura first applied with Hanover Habitat in November of 2015. At the time she did not qualify for the program. Instead of becoming discouraged, Laura found out what she needed to do to qualify and she worked towards it. Laura returned to us in the spring, determined and ready to become a homeowner. She was approved for our homebuyer program in June of 2016. Laura has already immersed herself in our program, spending over 70 hours of her time working on the homes of others and attending educational classes.
To Laura, owning a home will mean getting to keep her son in the same school. It will mean not having to constantly rely on a landlord to make her apartment safe and healthy. Ultimately, owning a home will mean strength and stability for Laura and her family.
Home #61: The Adams Family
Myra Adams first learned about Hanover Habitat for Humanity when she was driving through Ashland with her son, Cody, and came across a sign for Bailey Woods, Hanover Habitat’s first neighborhood. Myra thinks that she was meant to drive past Bailey Woods that day because she learned about Habitat in a time of great need. She has overcome a lot in recent years, including learning to live with a severe illness and disability. Myra and her son have been living in rental housing with extremely high rent for years. In addition to their home being unaffordable, it does not meet Myra’s accessibility needs.
As an active member of Atlee Community Church and the coordinator for the Atlee Outreach Ministry, Myra devotes time, as her health will allow, providing food, clothing and much more to the homeless and underprivileged in Hanover County. Cody also supports the Atlee Outreach Ministry, primarily devoting his free time to serving hot meals to the homeless. Myra feels that God has called her to give back to the community however and whenever possible. In addition to her dedication to Hanover County’s faith community, she is also her children’s strongest supporter. She is currently putting her younger son through college. He is a successful, full-time college student at Old Dominion University.
Home #60: The Hernandez Family
Veronica and Luis Hernandez, Habitat’s 60th homeowners, are the proud parents of two children. Their daughter is in her senior year of high school and their son is a college student at Virginia Commonwealth University, studying Economics. The Hernandez’s are a hardworking and community-minded family. Veronica has spent her career in Social Services and currently works for Hanover County Social Services. Her son spends his spare time volunteering with Little Sisters of the Poor. They look forward to becoming active members of the Ashland community.
The Hernandez family has always lived in a rented house and it never really felt like “home.” They have worked so hard to become homeowners and they can’t wait to realize their dream of having a stable place to call home.
Home #59: The Searson Family
Joe and Katie Searson are hard-working, proud parents of an adorable two year old son. In February 2016, they welcomed their second child, a healthy and beautiful baby girl. Both Joe and Katie were born and educated in Hanover County and are eager to become homeowners in the community where they grew up. They look forward to living down the street from their parents, grandparents, and sisters.
Home #57: The Gerbino Family
Jay, Joanna, and their two children are excited to make their dream of home ownership a reality! Jay Gerbino works as a Machinist for the Fine Metal Corporation. He has lived in Hanover County his whole life. The Gerbino Family have worked the most sweat equity hours out of any homeowners, to date! With a total of almost 600 hours, they have exceeded their minimum of 300 sweat equity hours.