First Habitat for Humanity home to be built in New Prague

Habitat for Humanity International is a world-wide organization with affiliate offices in 100 countries and in all 50 of the United States. Minnesota alone has 32 Habitat for Humanity affiliates. Each affiliate defines its own service area and raises funds and builds homes within the boundaries of that defined area. Because the majority of the construction work is almost always done by volunteers, project management can be daunting for affiliate leadership—and the thought of collaborating on a project with yet another affiliate whose workforce is dependent on volunteers, as well, is not entered into lightly.

But for two Minnesota affiliates, the desire to end poverty housing and to ensure that every family has a decent, affordable place to live led them to combine their efforts to build a home together in a city where their respective service boundaries meet. South Central Habitat for Humanity’s service area includes the section of the City of New Prague located in Le Sueur County, and Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity’s service area includes the section of New Prague that is located in Scott County. The two affiliates recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that outlines their general agreement in regard to this new venture—the first Habitat for Humanity home to be built in New Prague.

Together, South Central HFH, with offices in Mankato, and Twin Cities HFH of Minneapolis, will join together to find a suitable lot, raise funds, garner volunteers, and select a family to purchase and help build the home. Funds will be raised within each affiliate’s service area outside of the City of New Prague. They will jointly seek the support of cash and in-kind donors inside New Prague’s city limits.

While poverty housing in Minnesota is generally not as apparent as it is in cities with distinct slum areas, such as New York or Chicago, our state certainly has its share of families who tolerate substandard living conditions. In fact, there are approximately 280 people living below poverty guidelines in the City of New Prague, many who live in substandard housing (overcrowded, too expensive per Federal guidelines of affordablility, or ill-maintained). Habitat for Humanity seeks to give such families a hand up

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