New home a sign of more good things to come in McComb, Mississippi

New home a sign of more good things to come in McComb, Mississippi

The newly forming Pike County Fuller Center for Housing, a former Habitat for Humanity affiliate, is hard at work on its first new home as a Fuller Center partner, under whose umbrella the house is expected to be dedicated in the fall of this year with volunteers on site every weekend until then as weather permits. The Enterprise Journal reports on this project here.

California church helps Thai family move from “house with one wall” to decent home

California church helps Thai family move from “house with one wall” to decent home

Toward the end of their workweek on a Fuller Center Global Builders trip to Thailand in January, volunteers from Berkeley, California’s First Presbyterian Church were asked if they had ever seen a house with one wall. The team, led by Tim Buscheck, was intrigued.

The house belonged to an electrician named Jareorn, who had performed work on several Fuller Center homes in Lampang. In his early 50s, he lived there with his mother, Boonma, who is in her early 70s.

What the team saw when they arrived at Jareorn’s house was indeed a structure with just one wall. It did have a solid roof held up by strong posts, but its floors were dirt, and there was just one partial solid wall. In lieu of walls in other areas were woven bamboo and other screen materials. Sleeping areas were protected by mosquito nets.

Though Jareorn’s income as an electrician is modest, it was enough to qualify for a Fuller Center home. The challenge, though, would be securing funds to quickly build a new home. Fortunately, upon returning home Buscheck’s team enlisted help from their First Presbyterian Church family and raised the funds needs for a simple, decent home — with four solid outside walls.

In late April, local construction workers who had labored alongside the church volunteers earlier this year started the new home with solid foundations, a concrete slab floor, concrete block walls inside and out, a steel roof frame and corrugated concrete roofing. The outside and inside walls were stuccoed and painted, and the floors all finished in ceramic tile.

The completed new home — with real walls, two bedrooms, a living area, kitchen and indoor bathroom (instead of the outhouse they formerly had) — was dedicated.

“Many deep thanks to all who helped make Jareorn and his mothers new home in Thailand possible in such a short time,” said Boots Walker, a native of Lampang, who started The Fuller Center’s covenant partner there with her husband, Ramsay. “We especially thank the generous friends from and all those associated with First Presbyterian Church of Berkeley.”

RELATED LINK: Volunteer witnesses “expansiveness of God’s love” on Global Builders trip to Thailand (Jan. 2018)

Slideshow of Jareorn and Boonma’s former and new home:

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Macon mom, children and volunteers transform house into like-new home

Macon mom, children and volunteers transform house into like-new home

The Fuller Center for Housing of Macon, Georgia, is leading the way in the city’s effort to reduce blight and help families have simple, decent places to live. The Fuller Center of Macon’s latest project was dedicated on Sunday for a hard-working mother of four children — all of whom took pride in working alongside local volunteers and Fuller Center U.S. Builders teams from out of state to transform another once-blighted house in the Napier Heights area into a beautiful, like-new home. WXGA-TV has this report from dedication day, in addition to the following video from The Fuller Center of Macon.

Ginger Ford Northshore, Disaster ReBuilders team up in Livingston Parish, Louisiana

Ginger Ford Northshore, Disaster ReBuilders team up in Livingston Parish, Louisiana

The Ginger Ford Northshore Fuller Center for Housing and the Fuller Center Disaster ReBuilders are teaming up to help two families in Livingston Parish, Louisiana — one whose home was devastated in the 2016 floods and another who had been living in substandard housing. The builds began in June, and they hope to have the families in their homes within two months. Volunteers from Quad Area YouthBuild Program and the Livingston Young Professionals are providing a boost to the effort, which began with a large group from Maryland called Dreambuilders, who came on June 18 to raise the walls. KSLA-TV has a new report on the build, featuring an interview with Ginger Ford Northshore Executive Director Tamara Danel that you can see by clicking the link below.

KSLA-TV report

Charity Navigator rates Fuller Center 4 stars — recognizing ministry as “exceptional”

Charity Navigator rates Fuller Center 4 stars — recognizing ministry as “exceptional”

Charity Navigator — the largest charity evaluator in America — for the first time has evaluated The Fuller Center for Housing and rated it 4 stars, its highest-level “exceptional” rating.

Despite having been given the highest-level Platinum rating for transparency by GuideStar and meeting all 20 standards as a member of the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance, Charity Navigator would not evaluate The Fuller Center until it received enough votes on its website requesting it to do so.

So, in May of this year, The Fuller Center asked people to vote at Charity Navigator’s website for it to evaluate this affordable housing ministry that was founded in 2005 by Millard Fuller. Hundreds of votes later, Charity Navigator examined The Fuller Center’s programs, financials and much more before awarding the exceptional 4-star rating.

“The Fuller Center for Housing’s exceptional 4-star rating sets it apart from its peers and demonstrates its trustworthiness to the public,” according to Michael Thatcher, President & CEO of Charity Navigator. “Only a quarter of charities rated by Charity Navigator receive the distinction of our 4-star rating. This adds The Fuller Center to a preeminent group of charities working to overcome our world’s most pressing challenges. Based on its 4-star rating, people can trust that their donations are going to a financially responsible and ethical charity when they decide to support The Fuller Center.

“Those of us in the nonprofit world are basically custodians of other people’s money,” Fuller Center President David Snell said today. “They entrust us with their resources so that we can achieve goals that we agree on. It’s important, then, that our donors have a way to measure the quality of our stewardship, and that’s what Charity Navigator does. We’re grateful to have the affirmation that a 4-Star rating carries.”

A grass-roots ministry, The Fuller Center is now rated by Charity Navigator alongside such large nonprofits as the American Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity, Wounded Warrior Project, Save the Children and more.

About Charity Navigator

Charity Navigator,, is the largest charity evaluator in America and its website attracts more visitors than all other charity rating groups combined. The organization helps guide intelligent giving by evaluating the Financial Health and Accountability & Transparency of more than 8,000 charities. Charity Navigator accepts no advertising or donations from the organizations it evaluates, ensuring unbiased evaluations, nor does it charge the public for this trusted data. As a result, Charity Navigator, a 501 (c) (3) public charity itself, depends on support from individuals, corporations and foundations that believe it provides a much-needed service to America’s charitable givers. Charity Navigator, can be reached directly by telephone at (201) 818-1288, or by mail at 139 Harristown Road, Suite 101, Glen Rock, N.J., 07452.


Grandmother raising two girls finally has home of her own Springfield, Ohio

Grandmother raising two girls finally has home of her own Springfield, Ohio

SPRINGFIELD, Ohio — Clarice Crowe has longed for a home of her own — not just for herself but one that she could someday pass along to her two granddaughters. However, even while working full-time, she was only able to rent until the Clark County Fuller Center for Housing came along with partners from Neighborhood Housing Partnership. Now, not only do Clarice and her granddaughters have a home of their own, but it is affordable and energy-efficient. You can read complete coverage of their story and home dedication in this article from the Springfield News-Sun.

Chattahoochee Fuller Center Project’s 40th new home exemplifies ministry, partnerships

Chattahoochee Fuller Center Project’s 40th new home exemplifies ministry, partnerships

(Photo: Homeowners Rodney and Carmen Lott with the Chattahoochee Fuller Center Project’s Kim Roberts and Robin Pierre at Friday’s dedication.)

Just as Rodney and Carmen Lott tried to explain on Friday afternoon how the nearly complete new home just a few steps away from them would change their lives, they were interrupted. A florist was there to deliver a housewarming plant — a gift from their new next-door neighbor, Rachael.

They were getting used to such interruptions. Since volunteers began raising the walls on their new home just a few days earlier on June 18, 2018, the project was hit with a slew of positive surprises and unexpected blessings on a daily basis — in addition to all of the hard work and blessings that paved the way for the project in the first place.

The entire build was a conglomeration of everything that makes the Chattahoochee Fuller Center Project one of the most thriving in the United States. Another neighbor rode down the street to the work site along with his poodle on a zero-turn mower each morning to deliver waters for the dozens of volunteers, most of whom came from the Chattahoochee Valley, but a team of 10 came from Pennsylvania — including house leaders Barry and Amy Stuck. Several area churches supported the build and sent youth volunteers. Other volunteers included men from New Birth Ministries’ transitional program. Nearby West Point Mayor Steve Tramell also was a house leader. And Chambers County Sheriff Sid Lockhart grilled burgers for all of the volunteers on Friday’s dedication day. Dozens more, too many to list, also worked on the home.

In-kind gifts such as OSB from Norbord, shingles from World Vision, insulation (and employee volunteers) from Knauf, HVAC from 4 Seasons Heating and Air, countertops from A&X Granite & Marble, paint from Behr and enough Hardie Board for this home — plus two more planned for September — means the house will be even more affordable as the Lotts repay the costs of building the home with a zero-percent interest mortgage that will go toward helping others in the community get the same hand-up. The Lotts cannot wait to make their first payment.

“We realize how special this is — how much love this is,” Carmen said. “Everybody’s here. It’s been amazing. We didn’t quite realize what The Fuller Center did until we got involved. Now we’re excited about the next house and that we get to help.”

“It’s a fresh start,” added Rodney, who said they had been renters for the past ten years.”It’s a place to call our own, and it’ll be paid for in 20 years. I can’t even describe how humbling it is. We love The Fuller Center and encourage everyone to get involved.”

Chattahoochee Fuller Center President Curt Johnson said the teamwork and community involvement seen this week is no coincidence but the result of years of cultivating relationships and producing results. He added that this project’s homeowner partners have many friends throughout the community, only increasing the volunteer interest and financial support.

“We had so many people come together, so many businesses and so many industries, and a lot of our individual donors came forward when they found out who the homeowners were,” Johnson said.

“We so blessed to live in the community of Valley-West Point-Lanett,” CFCP Executive Director Kim Roberts said. “We’re called The Greater Valley for a reason. There’s a lot of great people here, a lot of great businesses. … It’s just been amazing to see, even with the heat, what can be done when a little bit of love is spread.”

Indeed, the heat was oppressive all week long, yet the volunteers and leaders fought through it and have the home nearly ready for the Lotts to move in — something they will do in July. Even though he and his Pennsylvania crew are more used to milder summer temperatures, house captain Barry Stuck had no complaints.

Pennsylvania crew

“Yeah, you’re tired and you’re sweaty, but it’s a sense of accomplishment that you’re really helping somebody, and the homeowners really appreciate it,” Stuck said. “It’s just the satisfaction of being able to work with a homeowner and just to help them maybe start a better life. They have a need, and we have a gift to be able to work with our hands. It’s just nice to be able to come and help them get a fresh start.”

“Oh, it has been sooo hot,” said Roberts, a lifelong Southerner. “We have been spoiled by the air-conditioner. But you know what — when you see people continue to work in this kind of weather, they love what they do.”

Like the CFCP’s Roberts, Rodney Lott is a double-amputee. The amputations were necessary to stop the spread of a bone disease.

“We’re soul buddies because we’re amputees,” he said of his relationship with Roberts, whom he first met at the CFCP’s ReUse Store in Lanett, Alabama, where items from furniture to tools to clothes can be found at huge discounts with profits benefiting the CFCP’s work. “I’ve known Kim for several years. Everything in our house came from the ReUse Store, just about.”

Also like Roberts, he deals with his condition with a sense of humor and a never-ending drive to serve others and share the love he has for everyone he meets.

“‘I fought a bone disease for years, and they were taking off a little at a time,” he recalls “We prayed about it and were sad for a minute, but it’s been a blessing. It’s allowed me to talk with people who are going to lose their leg or have lost a leg and don’t want to wear the prosthetics. God opened a door for me to talk with them.”

Each day of the blitz build — as with almost every Fuller Center build across the nation and around the world — began with a devotion. Friday was Rodney’s turn to deliver the devotion. He focused on one word: wanted.

“God doesn’t need us — He wants us,” Rodney said. “God didn’t need anybody here — He wanted these people here to show up to work. What a powerful word. We’ve seen all these people come out because they wanted to, because they love God. … It’s awesome just to be a child of God and just to know that there are people who love you.”

RELATED LINK: Valley Times-News editorial — “Millard Fuller would be proud of the CFCP”

Friday dedication day photo gallery:

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David Snell: Armenia’s 10th anniversary celebration truly a special occasion

David Snell: Armenia’s 10th anniversary celebration truly a special occasion

(Photo: From left: Sheilla Snell, Abie Alexander and David Snell)

Fuller Center President David Snell recently returned from Armenia, where he joined with Fuller Center supporters from the United States and in-country leadership to mark the 10-year anniversary of the covenant partner joining the ranks of The Fuller Center for Housing — a period that has seen more than 650 Armenian families helped into simple, decent homes. Below, President Snell chats with Director of Communications Chris Johnson about the celebration. Later, check out a galley of photos from the event provided by Fuller Center Armenia, and be sure to read this account of the celebration from Panorama>>AM.

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