Rosie the Riveter is an iconic WWII image used to recruit women into the work force. Since the end of the war, this image has become a symbol of feminine capability. Today, this image profoundly resonates within me as a symbol of my capabilities.
When I began building my home, I also began building myself! With every nail I drove and every wall I raised, I built an inner strength housed within the resilience my experience with Habitat was constructing. When selected to represent the 20th anniversary Habitat Cabarrus Women Build project, I was flooded with emotion. What an honor I thought to myself, attaching the image of a women’s strength to what I saw as my biggest feat. Obtaining home-ownership and securing a stable life for myself and family would soon be realized through my concerted efforts and those of women leaders throughout my community.
But my Women Build story didn’t begin with the start of Habitat’s 20th anniversary women build project and it has yet to come to an end!
|Working on a build as Volunteer Coordinator|
with Development Director Katie Page.
After graduation, I worked long, unpredictable hours for a very low wage trying tirelessly to simply provide for my young daughter. Despite my best efforts I couldn’t find another job and continued earning drastically less than my degree deceptively lead me to believe I would earn. I was living in a place that was not safe but couldn’t afford to live anywhere else. In 2010, a young man I went to high school with was shot because of a bad drug deal outside my apartment as I was unloading my daughter after a long night at work. The very next day I was reintroduced to Habitat, but this time as an applicant.
Since the completion of my home, my life has continued to intertwine with Habitat and Women Build. In 2013, I was brought on board to serve as the construction assistant to our famous "Bob the builder." Then in 2014, I was offered a position at the affiliate as the volunteer coordinator. The crazy part here is that my assigned supervisor turned out to be one of those strong women leaders who lent a hand on the building of my Women Build home (I am forever grateful Katie Page!). Once again I was overcome with excitement at the opportunity to build myself with the assistance of the strong women I looked up to and to serve alongside these women who had encouraged me during my partnership with Habitat (Shirley Kennerly this includes you too!).
|At our St. Patrick's Day Party fundraiser with Shirley Kennerly, |
Family Services Coordinator.