UNCG Campus Weekly

Campus Weekly is published each Wednesday when classes are in session. In the summer, it is published biweekly.

Home at Last

041311Feature_HabitatThe bright, sunny day felt like a good omen.

After months of working through all kinds of weather, the people who had swung hammers, wielded paint brushes and landscaped the yard came to dedicate the Habitat for Humanity house at 1505 Village Crest Drive on April 8.

The Beshir Ibnaouf and Maarif Abbas family proudly watched as well-wishers kicked off their shoes and walked into the house to explore the completed home. Some women bustled in the kitchen, warming trays of food that would be presented at the end of the dedication.

Outside, members of the UNCG community, Well∙Spring Retirement Community, Habitat and other family and friends mingled and shook hands. Well∙Spring funded the project, while UNCG and the family provided the labor.

“It’s amazing what a team can do when a team comes together,” said Chancellor Linda P. Brady, a short time later during the ceremony. Turning to Beshir and Maarif, she said, “I hope you have many years of happiness here.”

Dr. Anita Tesh, associate dean of the School of Nursing who served as the liaison between the university and the family, noted the family has been working toward the goal of having their own home since 1997, when Beshir first emigrated from the Sudan.

“I can think of no more perfect family for this,” she said. “These are folks we are going to be very happy to have as neighbors.”

Steve Fleming, CEO of Well∙Spring, noted that this was truly an inter-generational undertaking, with supporters ranging from ages 100 to 18.

“Times are tough and partnerships like these are going to be more important than ever,” he said.

Amanda Albert, the Habitat construction staff member who led volunteers step-by-step through the home-building process, presented the family with a Bible and Qran. Later, when Beshir made his remarks, he singled her out. “Amanda, you did a great job.”

The two-story, four bedroom house spans 1,550 square feet. It’s green certified, Energy Star certified and has non-toxic/sustainable wood cabinets.

And now the family of seven can finally call it home.

By Beth English
Photograph by Chris English

Visual: The April 8 Habitat for Humanity dedication for the home.