By Doug La Rocque
In conjunction with Lowes, women from New Lebanon and all around Columbia County gathered together on a warm and sunny Saturday, May 5, to build a home for Jen and her twin daughters Samantha and Alexandra. It was the kickoff of the National Women Build Week all across the country within the auspices of Habitat for Humanity. The program is now in its tenth year in a partnership with Lowes, which over that time has donated nearly two million dollars to the initiative which invites women to devote at least one day to help build decent and affordable housing in their community.
They actually got started on the home, at 1630 County Route 13 in New Lebanon, earlier in the week, ripping out the interior down to the studs, rewiring the entire two story home, adding new insulation and sheet rock. Painting was underway Saturday, when they took a break for the formal kickoff celebration.
Eloise Trainor, the founder of the Ladies Professional Golf Associations’ Future’s Tour and a local business owner was the keynote speaker. She talked about all the good she has personally seen with Habitat for Humanity, since becoming involved when one of her Future Tour stops was in Americus, GA, home of Habitat for Humanity. New Lebanon Town Supervisor Colleen Teal spent part of her day there as well, telling those gathered around how “educational and empowering for women” she found the entire project.
Volunteers will be needed at the site every Saturday through the summer to finish Jen’s new home, the 21st completed by the Columbia County Habitat for Humanity since it’s inception in 1993.
Besides the donations from Lowes and local contractors, funding for the Habitat for Humanity project comes through the creation of Restore, which encourages reuse and recycling, by restoring donations and reselling them back to the public at lower than retail pricing. The Restore on Route 66 in Hudson is just such an operation