Habitat breaks ground in Forest

A Habitat for Humanity groundbreaking event in Forest. 28 April 2022. (Blackburn Media Photo)

Two families in Forest will soon have the keys to their new homes thanks to Habitat for Humanity Sarnia-Lambton.

The non-profit held its first in-person groundbreaking ceremony in nearly two years on Thursday.

CEO David Waters said it’s really special to see people and do one of these events again.

“These are an important part of our process in dedicating the land, and for the family, it’s something they can really look forward to and start to envision their home.”

The organization’s 63rd and 64th builds will be located at 70 Union Street, right in front of St. Christopher’s Catholic Church. Waters said they will be the first of four linked homes on the property.

“We’re going to build two this year and two in 2024. We got two great families — one family sort of has been really pushed off because of the pandemic, so we’re excited to get them into their home finally.”

Waters said being able to secure land for their builds is really important.

“Land continues to be a challenge and we try to grab anything we can that Habitat can afford. Occasionally we get people that will give it to us at a discounted rate, sometimes we get offers of donations, so we’re grateful for anything we can get.”

Despite delays and closures caused by the pandemic, Waters said the organization is doing well.

“We’ve had obstacles like the closures of the Restore and slows in the build program, COVID-19 cases like anybody else, but I think we sort of weathered the storm really well.”

Waters said the two new builds should be complete by year’s end.