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Local families get help from Brush With Kindness

Families in three Ogle County communities got help recently with projects that spruced up the outside of their homes, thanks to Habitat for Humanity of Ogle County.

HFHOC Executive Director Vanessa White-Broome said this summer the organization kept busy with its Brush With Kindness program, rather than a new house build.

“Our goal is to reach people we can help,” she said. “We urge people to call us if they could use some help or know someone who does.”

A couple is Rochelle got a wheel-chair ramp needed for enhanced access into their home.

HFHOC volunteers poured a new concrete backyard patio for a couple in Mt. Morris and also hung a new service door into their garage, replaced the backyard gate, installed a grab rail near the gate, plus a few more projects.

Yard and deck clean-up and maintenance is underway for a Forreston family, and a new storm door will be installed as soon as it arrives.

In all three cases, the homeowners and their friends and family members pitched in alongside the Habitat crew to provide “sweat equity” to complete the projects.

“The resident is always deeply involved in the decision making. This is their property,” White-Broome said.

Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical Christian ministry, comprised of volunteers, that welcomes to all people dedicated to eliminating poverty housing.

Founded in 1976, Habitat now works in all 50 states in the U.S. and in more than 70 countries and has helped more than 22 million people.

Future homeowners help build their homes and then buy them through affordable, no-profit mortgages; their payments go into a Fund for Humanity to build additional homes.

To be chosen as the recipient of a Habitat home, a family must apply and undergo a lengthy selection process.

Since 2002 HFHOC has been building homes, almost annually, in local communities, including Polo, Forreston, Mt. Morris, Byron, and Rochelle.

White-Broome said they are planning their 13th build in 2020 in Rochelle, where two lots have been donated for that purpose.

The process to find a deserving Ogle County family will begin with an informational session on Thursday, Oct. 3 at 6:30 p.m. at the Holcomb Bank Community Room at 233 Illinois 38 in Rochelle.

For more information call White-Broome at 815-440-6598.