A home of their own

MARSHALL – There will be a new house on South 1st Street this summer thanks to the Redwood River Habitat for Humanity.

City and county officials, representatives from Redwood River HFH, the ReStore in Marshall, HFH of Minnesota and the Catholic Daughters of America gathered Wednesday morning to conduct the groundbreaking ceremony on the project.

Brenda VanNostrand and her daughter Tiffany, the family that will be moving into the new house, were present and visibly excited to get started. VanNostrand said that she has been a renter for the past 26 years and is looking forward to becoming a homeowner. She is excited to be able to do landscaping and plant flowers.

“I’m going to be very particular about my yard, there will be roses,” Brenda VanNostrand said. “When you have your own space, you can do whatever you want with it.”

Tiffany VanNostrand said she was excited to have a bigger yard.

Executive Director of Redwood River HFH Charlie Sanow said the former lot used to be an eyesore and was derelict.

“This was the site of a drug house,” Sanow said. “And after it was torn down the city donated the lot to us.”

“These partnerships are wonderful,” said Cal Brink, executive director of the Marshall Area Chamber of Commerce. “Any time you can take a property that was less than average and put in a brand new house to fill a need… it’s great for the neighborhood and the community.”

“It’s exciting to see. Our idea was that this is where we hope to be, and now the people living here can see it,” said April Riordan, capacity building director for Habitat for Humanity of Minnesota.

The house will be built on a slab with Extreme Panel out of Cottonwood building the walls and roof. The structural insulated panels, or SIPs, used on the house will allow workers to get the walls and roof up in a matter of days.

An additional $10,000 grant was awarded to project by the Catholic Daughters of America. The Redwood River HFH chapter submitted a grant to the CDA and won this year’s award.

“This is our 14th house we’ve done with Habitat for Humanity in Minnesota,” said CDA State Regent Ellen Huneke. “We’ve been able to give an average grant of $10,000 for the past 14 years.”

“We sell Gummi Bears every year, and we use the money to give a grant to a worthy organization. Redwood River HFH submitted a grant this year and they won,” said Evonne Seivert of Marshall and second vice state regent for the CDA.

Other help for the project will come from sales at the ReStore and many building materials will be donated to complete the house, but Sanow said that they are still looking for volunteers to help with the build.

“Individuals, groups or organizations can all volunteer,” Sanow said. “We’re hoping to start at the end of June and will need the most volunteers in July and August.”

If you or your organization is interested in volunteering with the Habitat for Humanity build, contact Tom Ranfranz, ReStore manager, at 507-929-0371.