The Union Recorder

Local News

June 28, 2013

The wait is over

Habitat family served first in five years

MILLEDGEVILLE — From nearly losing the affiliate to thriving in the community, Habitat for Humanity of Milledgeville/Baldwin County broke a five-year barrier last Friday by selecting its 18th homeowner.

Single mother Jennie Halim and her three children Jamil, 18, Ari, 9, and YaMari, 8, will soon call a refurbished residence on Leo Court home base.

The five bedroom, two bathroom house is a welcome upgrade from the family’s two bedroom Magnolia Avenue residence.

Halim said the dining room became a bedroom to accommodate everybody.

The new home will be an inviting family gathering place. Mom gets personal space to unwind from hard working hours at the north side Piggly Wiggly, and her young children won’t need to cross another bedroom to get to the kitchen anymore.

The Halims saw the Leo Court home for the first time Wednesday afternoon. A proud mother described a bundle of nerves. Halim can’t say thank you enough.

“It hasn’t completely sunk in because I’m in disbelief,” she said.

Habitat executive director Murali Thirumal said serving families is the primary affiliate mission. This recent selection means Habitat is back on track.

“If we are not serving families, we are failing. All of us on the board feel good we are able to fulfill that mission,” Thirumal said.

The selection process started with 56 applicants in October 2012. Applicants are screened based on need for housing, adjusted median income for Milledgeville and ability to pay.

Potential homeowners can’t make too much that they qualify for a traditional loan, but must have a steady enough job to pay back the Habitat loan.

Those lucky enough to be selected make interest free monthly payments on a 20-year note.

Thirumal said choosing a good, fiscally responsible person takes time.

Applicants must have a documented history of paying bills.

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