Habitat for Humanity needs community help to build new community in Clovis

Clovis, Calif. (KFSN) -- A new community is popping up in the city of Clovis, but the builders need your help.

The sound of hammering is music to Songer Her's ears. Because every nail and every beam is the realization of a dream. "Wow, you know, I feel like I have a new life with a new home."

The father of three is contributing what's called Sweat Equity because he's unable to afford a down payment or qualify for a traditional loan. He's putting in hours of work, while learning the construction trade. All of his neighbors on this Southeast Fresno street have done the same. "We don't give homes to families. We build homes with families. So in a sense, we're not giving handouts, but hand ups," said Matthew Grundy, Habitat for Humanity.

Across town a similar development is taking shape on Rialto Avenue in Clovis. Habitat for Humanity partnered with the city of Clovis to develop a piece of land. "Being able to offer homes that are affordable so that everyone has an opportunity to live in great neighborhoods and be part of our community is something that we have a priority on here in the city," explained Andy Haussler, City of Clovis.

The project needs to raise $200,000 to get off the ground and Habitat is asking for donations from the community to ultimately build a better community. "We're gonna be going around sending folks to pick weeds, clean up trash on streets, wash cars, do small things and large things," said Grundy.

"It's an opportunity to clean up some aspects of the neighborhood, there were some dilapidated homes on these properties that we've torn down and really gotten rid of some problems and this will be a positive change for the neighborhood," Haussler said.

The city hopes to have streets and other infrastructure in by June/July of 2016-- and construction underway soon after that.
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