Volunteers start building two new South Apopka homes as part of Habitat for Humanity’s Women Build Week

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About 10 volunteers initiated construction of two new South Apopka homes that will be part of a new affordable housing community on Saturday, May 6, marking the launch of Habitat’s 10th annual National Women Build Week, May 6-14.

The two South Apopka houses, located on East 13th Street, are part of Juniper Bend, Habitat Seminole-Apopka’s 24-home affordable housing community. Habitat for Humanity of Greater Orlando will be in charge of constructing Arbor Bend, which will feature 34 homes also in South Apopka.

Together, these 58 homes are the result of a public-private partnership between the two Habitat groups, the Orange County government and Homes in Partnership.

Juniper Bend and Arbor Bend provide homeownership opportunities through Habitat’s homeownership program that includes sweat equity. Homeownership criteria include housing need, the ability to pay, and income levels depending on family size.

Juniper Bend wasn’t the only Habitat community that celebrated the start of National Women Build Week on May 6. That same day, volunteers completed construction of the 10-unit townhome community Magnolia Place in Longwood by doing drywall.

On Friday, May 12, Waste Management Inc. will have a team of volunteers working on the Juniper Bend houses. Waste Management is one of several of Habitat’s corporate and non-profit sponsors.

“Waste Management strives, as a good corporate neighbor, to support a local organization like Habitat for Humanity Seminole-Apopka and a good cause to support the community,” said Sheree Grant, a Waste Management engineer and team representative who was at the May 6 event.

Each team will have a maximum of 15 individuals. This is done for safety reasons as well as ensuring that everyone has a job to do.

Linda Andrews, Habitat Seminole-Apopka spokeswoman, said that National Women Build Week often leads up to Mother’s Day, the second Sunday of May.

“To me, it’s really special because most of our partner families are single moms,” Andrews said. “I just think it’s really appropriate that we see women stepping up in such a big way to help other moms. It really has a profound meaning there.”

An extended version of this story will appear in the Friday, May 12, issue, of The Apopka Chief.