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Work, Respect, Belong

Work, Respect, Belong. That is the motto at Collin Griffith’s school. When he speaks of the teachers and students there he beams with a sense pride.

The same can be said when he talks about his cozy neighborhood in Newport. In his essay about what his Habitat home means to him, Collin wrote that his
neighborhood is very small but very lucky. He and his mother Teri live in one of seventeen Habitat homes all just a couple blocks apart. For Collin, lucky meant being surrounded by all sorts of different cultures.

“In my neighborhood there are Asians, Ethiopians, Somalis, African Americans and white people,” said Collin. “I’ve never seen chicken prepared so many different ways.”

If you were to stop by you may see Collin organizing a touch football game, leading the younger kids to the bus stop, or building snowmen and snow forts in the winter. Roughly 80 kids of all ages call this neighborhood home.

The stability of an affordable mortgage has allowed Teri to do things she never imagined before Habitat. She saved to buy a new car and to take two family vacations. She’s even been promoted a couple times at her job as an administrative assistant.

“To think of where we were ten years ago to now is like night and day,” says Teri. “Our lives have truly changed forever and we owe a debt of gratitude to all that helped us along the way.”

Safety and money were huge worries for the family before buying their Habitat home. Now they’re optimistic about a future that includes things like high school sports and higher education.

Work, Respect, Belong. Not just a school motto, it’s a road map to the American Dream.

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