The first-hand impact of Habitat for Humanity Victoria
"Without you, we wouldn't have a house..."
Photo: Michelle's son Perry with a volunteer at the build site of their future home, 2013.
“I have had a safe place for my family, which I didn’t think I would have. When I first started this journey, I didn’t know where I was going to be living. I didn’t know how I was going to feed and look after my children and give them everything that they needed, let alone what they wanted.”
10 years ago, Michelle and her young family began their journey with Habitat for Humanity Victoria. Now, they reflect on a decade of safety, stability, and positive outcomes!
When Michelle first reached out, she was raising three young children by herself in an old farmhouse with dirty water and slugs coming through the floorboards. It was a challenging period of housing stress for her. Even with support from her parents, she couldn’t figure out a way to give her children a decent place to call home. Now, she sits across from Jenny as she shares her story in a beautiful home, surrounded by her wonderful family.
When we asked Michelle to recall the experience of building their own home alongside volunteers, she said:
“It was good because we felt like we were doing something towards our home. We also got to work with the volunteers and it was really nice getting to form those relationships with the volunteers. I remember those days of endless barbecues!”
Beyond simply helping them build a home, our volunteers played with the children as they worked, creating for them unique memories of community and friendship.
Michelle is most proud of the way she’s been able to raise her children:
“There’s been stability, which means the children have been able to attend the same school. Both the girls are in their final year of university, and [my son] is hoping to go into university as well... Just the fact that they’ve been able to go all the way through is really, really good.”
In early 2023, Michelle became the first of our Partner families in Yea to successfully refinance after a 10-year interest free loan with Habitat for Humanity Victoria. This is a significant step for the family, showcasing their strength and independence as a family.
“I’ve been able to have a stable life... for myself, my children, and even my parents,” Michelle proudly shares.
(Published in 2023)