“I just can’t believe that my dream of owning my own home in America is now a reality,” said Luz Cuecha.
This house is much more than just a number to Luz Cuecha and her family as well as those who helped to build the house. This house represents everything the American dream is to be: opportunity, freedom, liberty, and a future. However, the journey to owning her own home has not always been easy.
Luz Cuecha was born and raised in Columbia. She moved to the United States for about six years before returning to her home county. While she was there she met her future husband and had two daughters. Just a few years after having their daughters, they decided to move back to the United States to give their family a chance at better opportunities. During this time, her husband felt that America wasn’t for him and went back to Columbia. Luz became a single mother in America, working hard to give her daughters a life they deserved as well as a better future.
So it was no surprise that at the home dedication Luz was humbled and grateful for everyone who made this dream a reality for her and her daughters. She said, “Thank God for Habitat for Humanity. Some people can’t even achieve the American dream, and it makes it even harder coming from a different country.” She continued to say, “I wish my parents were here, but I know that they are looking down and watching us be a part of the American dream.”
The building of this home not only completes Luz Cuecha’s American dream, but it provides worth and excitement to all those who had a hand in making this house a home.
Mike Fike, a Morgantown City Council member, said, “This house is within my ward, and I couldn’t be more proud of Habitat for Humanity and the work they do to build high quality homes at such a low cost. This service really builds the community, brings out the beauty, and makes for a more vibrant looking neighborhood. It’s a thrill to be a part of my ward, and I can’t say enough about what Habitat for Humanity is doing in and around this area.” Fife was not the only one excited about this house and the area that surrounds it.
Adelheid Schaupp, President of North Central West Virginia Home Builders Association and President of the Mon County Habitat Board of Directors said, “This is such a big accomplishment. This project was our second house in this area, and we hope to build more as we are building three times the amount of houses we usually do.” She explained that by building houses at such a rapid pace, it leaves a profound impact on the community, as well as creating opportunities as it did for Luz Cuecha and her family. As usual the energy and support has to come from somewhere, and that starts with the volunteers.
Shawnda Cook, Executive Director, said, “This home was built through the support of over 400 volunteers working alongside the partner family and individuals who invested in providing decent, affordable housing to a family in our community. Together we built a home, hope, and a community.”
There were many people who attended the home dedication, were excited to see the final product after months of hard work, and welcomed the family into their home. Those who attended were volunteers,board members as well as friends and family of Luz Cuecha.
Family Advocate, Dan Miller was there to express his excitement for Luz, encourage, and support in her new journey as first time home owner, and Father, John Peck presented a bible to the Cuecha family and blessed the house with a prayer.
This house is not only the 43rd Habitat for Humanity home in Mon County, in fact, this house was coined the “Energy Star 3.0” home. This means that all windows, doors, and appliances in the homes that are energy efficient. All the water systems meet low-flow standards, the HVAC are Energy Star rated, extensive air stripping and sealing are installed, and cellulose insulation is used. By building homes as energy efficient as possible, the families will not only have affordable monthly payments, but also have a decrease in utility costs.
This house could not have been completed without the 400 volunteers and everyone else involved. If you want to learn more about what Mon County Habitat for Humanity is please visit our website.