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Habitat for Humanity

Florida received over twenty million dollars for Habitat for Humanity.
That was the State's share after the Federal Government settled a lawsuit with mortgage companies.   
   
Okaloosa County's share is  240-thousand dollars, which will go to four projects in the County.
    Channel Three's Rob Brown attended the ground breaking for the first of those projects.

Two weeks ago on this lot stood a house so dirty and damaged, Habitat for Humanity volunteers wouldn't even walk inside. By the end of summer, it'll be replaced by a new house, a house that will become a home for a family who says the opportunity is a blessing.

Nitsi Bennett said, "It's all clear, the family's ready. It's a mom, dad, and four little ones, so we're building a four bedroom. So we're all excited for this one."

Robin Brown, her husband, and their four children have been living in a mobile home with family. Because of health issues, her husband was the only one able to work.
    "It's given me some hope, it gives me some stability, and a feeling of relief that I can provide for my family. My husband has worked so hard and finally we're getting something from it. So it's like things are looking up."

She says the opportunities this gives her children, especially her twelve year old son, are what's most important.

Robin Brown said, "..being here in Crestview, and him being able to go to a larger school with more opportunities, you know, I think it's going to open a lot of doors for him, and I'm excited."

Most of the nearly quarter of a million dollars went to purchsaing the properties the houses will sit on. There are four projects altogether.

Nitsi Bennett said, "After I got done crying out of excitement, we picked the area..it was just a matter of having to work fast enough in order to be able to secure the lots.

Habitat for Humanity President Nitsi Bennett says their goal was to build where abandoned, damaged properties had been to help neighborhoods as well as the families.
    "If we don't fix the neighborhood, nobody else will. So that's my determination. Fix the neighborhoods as well as put families in homes."

Habitat for Humanity volunteers say all four projects will be completed by next summer.