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This morning, a single mother celebrated the purchase of her first home after completing the Habitat for Humanity of Pinellas and West Pasco Counties homeownership program. Through a partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Pinellas and West Pasco Counties and Warrick Dunn Charities, the family was surprised to be greeted by Warrick Dunn, former NFL star, as they pulled up to their home dedication.

This was the 600th home our affiliate dedicated in Pinellas County, and the 640th home overall in both Pinellas and West Pasco.

When Allison walked through the front door, she was shocked to find each room filled with furniture, appliances and electronics from Aaron’s thanks to a donation valued at approximately $10,000. Aaron’s offers lease-purchase agreements so that customers who are budget or credit-constrained can own needed home merchandise like refrigerators, washers and dryers, beds and laptops.

The 182nd home celebration nationwide by Warrick Dunn Charities, the former NFL star’s nonprofit organization provides a hand up to single parents across the country and helps them achieve their goal of first-time homeownership as part of its “Homes for the Holidays” program. In addition to Aaron’s, all of the finishing touches, groceries, and down-payment assistance were made possible thanks to support from Publix, Cigna, and Ryan “Jume” Jumonville.

Allison, a patient care technician, is the mother of six children. “Five of my six children have different abilities that make them special. My kids are everything to me and continue to blast through labels and limitations their doctors may give them. They are the bravest people I know and fight for everyday they are blessed with.”

While Allison completed her 20 homeownership courses, 350 sweat equity hours, and saved for closing costs through the Habitat homeownership program, she kept her hard work a secret from her children. They pulled up to the dedication confused, as they thought there were going to be having family portraits done. Having a home of their own was the first surprise, but what awaited them inside was another amazing surprise.

In addition to the surprises inside the house, the family was surprised with a brand new accessible van through the Denard Span Foundation’s Car Program, which will also be customized later for the children’s special needs.

For footage of the special morning, please visit https://www.facebook.com/HabitatPinellasPasco/.

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