“I really like doing the construction. I put a wall up [on a house] which was something different I’d never done.”
Every Homeowner Has a Story
Future Habitat Homeowner
Lakesha is a hardworking mother of 3 boys, Sa’Quan (13), Amarian (18) and Arterus (21), who are all in various stages of their lives. Sa’Quan is in grade school, Amarian just graduated from high school in May, and Arterus will return to Ball State, where he majors in Music Production, in the fall. As a family, Lakesha and her sons enjoy spending time together eating the big dinners she cooks on Sundays. “I’ve got boys so they like to eat,” she says.
When asked about how she spends her time, Lakesha says, “Working, working and more working. Every day I do something. On the weekend, I go to the Tri-State food bank to get in community service hours for the program.” During the week, Lakesha is a receptionist at a local healthcare clinic. She genuinely likes her job and explains that their flexibility has greatly helped her, especially now that she’s working on Sweat Equity hours for Habitat.
Lakesha experienced many ups and downs in life as a single parent before applying for Habitat’s homeownership program. She currently lives in a 3-bedroom home, which doesn’t allow her boys to each have their own space. “When you really think about how much money you’re spending on [a rental] and it’s not even yours… I’m excited to not have to rent anymore.”
Lakesha learned about Habitat a few years back from a friend and started working to pay off debts and get her finances in order. “I finally got things together and now I’ve been working on [the homeownership program] since May. I was on top of it… I turnt everything in at the drop of a dime and I try to sign up for any and every opportunity that comes up. I’ve been at it every weekend and my boys help at the ReStore during the week.” Since starting the program, she explains, she’s busier than ever, but she feels it’s all worth it, and she’s had many positive experiences. “I really like doing the construction. I put a wall up [on a house] which was something different I’d never done. And I met [another homeowner], Keba. She just finished the program. She’s pretty nice and she’s been checking in on me and seeing how I’m doing and if I’m staying on track, I appreciate that.”
Owning a home is exciting for her and her family—it will be a secure place with a stable, affordable cost that truly belongs to them. “I’ll be able to save money and do what I want with the place, like painting. I’m really happy about having a front porch so I can just sit outside.” She’s grateful for everyone who has helped along the way so far, from volunteers to friends and family. “Thank you to everyone for being so nice,” she says. “And for pushing me forward to not give up.”
Lakesha is nearly halfway through her required sweat equity and will soon be able to choose the lot her house will stand on. Construction will begin shortly after, and Lakesha will help build her own home from the ground up.