Habitat to dedicate another Grafton home, making 12 in county

By 
KRISTYN HALBIG ZIEHM
Ozaukee Press staff

Habitat for Humanity Ozaukee will dedicate the second unit in its Grafton duplex — the 12th home it has built in the county — on Sunday, Sept. 18.

The 3:15 p.m. dedication ceremony at the duplex, 2344 Wisconsin Ave., will be followed by an open house until 5 p.m.

Those attending are asked to park on First Avenue and walk to the home because there is no parking available on site.

The homeowners are a couple and their two children who had been renting a place in Cedarburg, Habitat Executive Director Diana Eggold said.

“They’re a really, really neat family,” Eggold said, and they’ve been dedicated to making the house a reality by raising funds and putting in time on the build.

The husband has been on the site working almost every weekend, she said.

“It’s a very humbling experience just to know that strangers would dedicate their time and energy for someone they’ve never met before, to come together to accomplish a common goal in the rain, cold and heat to help someone, us, build our home,” the husband said in a press release. “These are great people, wonderful people.”

The process, he added, has taught him to use tools and do things so he can “make sure my family has a safe home for years to come.”

His wife said the house “means legacy and finally putting down roots. One of the greatest gifts we can give our children is a home they can truly call their own. This exceeds any prayer I could have prayed and any dream I could have dreamt.”

She said the volunteers who worked on the house have become extended family, adding the experience has been a “reminder to never forget that in a world that looks so grim at times there are truly some amazing, wonderful people in it as well.”

In addition to in-kind work, the couple’s children helped raise money for the house by arranging a skating event that brought in $200.

The duplex is the third house Habitat built on the property, which was donated to Habitat in 2004.

At the time, the land was in the Town of Cedarburg but it was annexed into the Village of Grafton.

The first home built on the site was a single-family house completed in 2016. Habitat broke ground on the duplex in 2019 and completed the first unit in February, 2022.    

This unit is the final one to be built on the site.

Habitat builds affordable housing made possible through donations of money and materials, as well as volunteer labor. It then sells the properties to qualifying families using no-interest mortgage loans.

The monthly mortgage payments then go to support other Habitat projects.
   Habitat still needs to raise about $40,000 for this property, Eggold said, noting the driveway needs to be paved and landscaping done — something Habitat hopes to do by the end of the year.

Habitat had raised the money budgeted for the project, Eggold said, but the budget was put together before the pandemic. Increasing construction and material costs means the agency is over budget.

Habitat hopes to raise the needed funds through its Thankful Giving Campaign, which runs through the end of November, Eggold said.

The first $10,000 raised through the campaign will be matched by Port Washington State Bank, she said.

Then, Eggold said, Habitat plans to take a “little break” and do fundraising before it begins its next home.

The agency has land to build three more houses, all in Port Washington, she said, noting it will probably be another two years before the next groundbreaking.

But Habitat will continue its repair projects for homeowners in need even as it plans for the next big project, Eggold said, noting they do between five and 10 of these projects each year.

Donations can be sent to Habitat for Humanity Ozaukee, 2360 Dakota Dr., Grafton WI 53024, or made online at www.ozhh.org.

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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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