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Nonprofits Partner on Tiny House Project

Dec 17, 2021

Two local nonprofits are partnering up to build tiny houses for people who need help affording a place to stay while they or a loved one undergo medical treatment.

Habitat for Humanity of Abilene is helping build tiny houses in Abilene for local nonprofit Houses for Healing, a charitable organization that provides free, temporary lodging for people who are away from home and need a place to stay while facing medical difficulties. Houses for Healing currently operates four tiny houses on Hickory Street and purchased additional land in 2019 to build 16 more tiny houses, a storage building, and a larger laundry facility. Habitat is staffing one of the building projects and will provide volunteer assistance for the other builds.

CFA awarded a combined $45,000 to these two nonprofits during our fall discretionary grant cycle to support a construction superintendent for Habitat and operations for Houses for Healing.

"Houses for Healing is delighted by the partnership with Habitat for Humanity," said Houses for Healing President Brian Massey. "These two organizations are a great compliment. Habitat for Humanity has been building houses for a long time. Habitat's experienced volunteer base produces a professional and high-quality product in the tiny houses they are building. And, the beauty of these tiny houses is that they will give thousands of nights of free lodging to people who are in very difficult medical circumstances."

Habitat for Humanity of Abilene's executive director, Rosten Callarman, says it's a partnership that aligns with their mission.

"Habitat for Humanity is most well known for our work with affordable home ownership, but our mission has more flexibility than most realize. This partnership with Houses for Healing is a great example of how we are able to partner with other nonprofits so that our community can help our neighbors experiencing vulnerability," Callarman said.

The houses will be designated to serve people from different counties throughout the Big Country region, so when someone has to travel to Abilene for medical purposes and needs affordable lodging, they will have a free house to stay at, already designated for them.

Massey explains more about how the partnership will work and the impact it will have.

"Their work will help save lives here at Houses for Healing. Additionally, the partnership with Habitat is enabling the phase 2 project to move forward at a faster pace as their volunteers know exactly what to do, the order of the steps in building and build to meet code requirements. Lastly, our friends and co-laborers at Habitat are enabling the vision of Houses for Healing in caring for the sick to extend beyond the current house they are working on. With the limited resources of Houses for Healing and the large project to build 16 more tiny houses underway, the requests for help by Abilene and Big Country residents who are getting specialized treatments in larger cities is not possible. Having Habitat help shoulder the labor allows Houses for Healing to begin to look at ways to help our community members who are traveling to other areas."

The new houses are slated to be finished in early 2022.

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