“We will finally have a place to call our own, that we worked so hard to get. We now have something to leave to our children.”
Michael, an Assistant Manager at Belleair Health Care Center, and his wife, Shanel, are working towards their forever home with the Habitat Homeowner Program. Michael has been at his job for 10 years, and “he always puts the needs of the residents first, and goes out of his way to help in any way he can.” The couple has three girls, twins Kalia and Athena, and their youngest, Annetta. “We are a very hard-working family who is very active in our church. We love to do everything as a family including biking, hiking, and cooking together. We put family first, and care for everyone.”
Michael and Shanel’s twin daughters, Kalia and Athena, have similar interests. They are both very artistic and love to draw, while Kalia is learning piano and Athena is learning guitar. Kalia loves animals and plans to become a zookeeper, while Athena wants to become a veterinarian. The two love to spend time with family and put others first. Their youngest daughter, Annetta, is very independent and strong-willed. She loves Disney, and is learning to play guitar so that she can keep up with her sister’s musical talent. She is so excited to get her own room!
The couple works hard to give their kids a great life, but with rising rent costs they struggled to find an adequate home for the five of them. “We live in a two-bedroom apartment that we have very much out-grown. The girls all share one bedroom, which leads to a lot of arguments over personal space as they grow older. The girls can’t play outside as it’s not a safe area with traffic coming in and out, and there is limited space inside. There is no storage space in our bedrooms or kitchen, and although we are thankful for our apartment, we are completely on top of each other and need more space. With the housing market being so expensive, we would have had to work three jobs each just to pay for a home that we would never be able to enjoy. We don’t want to miss our kids growing up.”
When accepted into the Habitat program, all they could think was “Thank you God! We are so thankful for all of Habitat’s help through this process. God has surely blessed our family.”
“I am so excited to have space and a yard! We will so our kids happier, and a place of joy and comfort that is filled with love. HOme is where we get to be ourselves and relax from the chaos of the world. Habitat allows me this opportunity to own a home, and we are so thankful.”