Habitat for Humanity selects new Iqaluit homeowner for 2013

Joanna Awa will see an adapted dwelling built for her and her daughter in 2013

By NUNATSIAQ NEWS

Joanna Awa, shown here behind a Habitat for Humanity banner, will help the organization and other volunteers put up a new house this summer in Apex.


Joanna Awa, shown here behind a Habitat for Humanity banner, will help the organization and other volunteers put up a new house this summer in Apex.

A fourth Iqaluit family has been selected for the new Habitat for Humanity home slated to be built in Apex this summer, a June 17 Habitat for Humanity news release said.

Joanna Awa, a broadcaster with the CBC North, celebrated the good news June 16 when the first volunteer home construction team arrived in Iqaluit.

Those volunteers started work on Awa’s new home site by preparing piles for framing, the release said.

The home for Awa will improve the situation of her daughter Jenna, who uses a wheelchair, making life comfortable for both mother and daughter, the release said.

A wheelchair accessible home with minimal stairs will allow Jenna to spend more time at home with her family.

“This home means so much to me and my daughter,” Awa said. “As Jenna is growing, it has become increasingly difficult to carry her up several flights of stairs, or maneuver in my current apartment.”

The new accessible home will mean that her daughter can stay longer and more often while she is in school, and will eventually be able to live with Awa full-time.

“I’m so excited to start building,” Awa said.

Helping families build better lives for their children is what the organization is all about, Glenn Cousins, chair of the board of directors for Habitat for Humanity Iqaluit, said in the release.

“Habitat Iqaluit is very proud to be partnering with Joanna. This partnership will not only mean that another Iqaluit family will have access to affordable home ownership, but a deserving family will be brought closer together,” he said.

Habitat for Humanity allows families to pay an interest-free mortgage that is geared toward their income. Partner families must invest 500 hours of “sweat equity” as the down payment for their house.

However, those opportunities depend a lot on different sponsors and volunteers.

This summer, more than 60 Global Village volunteers will be travelling to Iqaluit to work on Awa’s home — beginning with a “midnight sun build” June 22.

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