Opinion: A positive note

When a despicable theft of tools threatened the work of a faith-based, charitable group, area people and businesses stepped in to build a solution. Here’s a letter received from the organization’s officials:

From Marlene Medin, board president, and Kelly Smith, executive director, River City Habitat for Humanity.

Dear Editor:

We are writing to publicly thank those who recently came to our aid following the theft of many of River City Habitat for Humanity’s construction tools in mid-October. The tools and cash donated enabled us to continue our work without interruption.

The swift response is especially gratifying but it is only the most recent example of our community’s support of Habitat for Humanity’s commitment to make safe, decent housing a reality for lower income working families.

Since our local chapter began in 1992, we’ve made it possible for more than 80 local families to purchase homes from Habitat for Humanity. It is a “hand up, not a handout.”

Our partner families work 350-450 hours of sweat equity building their own homes, and working on other Habitat projects in the community. Attendance at monthly classes to learn about home ownership is a requirement. They also pay monthly interest-free mortgage payments over 20-25 years and their payments help fund future Habitat homes. In 2012, RCHFH families paid over $31,000 in local personal property taxes.

We run a tight ship and there isn’t a lot of extra money for unexpected losses like the recent theft of tools. River City Habitat of Humanity has a small staff but is really powered by the dedication of hundreds of volunteers, and by the contributions and support of local churches, businesses, civic organizations and individuals.

We do not take our community’s support for granted. It has been the generosity of the greater Jefferson City community which has made this housing ministry possible. You can find out more about our work at www.rivercityhabitat.org .

As we look to the future, please know that we value your continued support. Quite literally, we can’t do it without you.

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