Monday, October 26, 2009

Pittsburg State Sig Eps Build for Habitat

Habitat for Humanity breaks ground on 10th home


The Morning Sun

PITTSBURG — Habitat for Humanity of Crawford County has plenty to be thankful for after a groundbreaking for a new home on Sunday afternoon.

First of all, Sunday's groundbreaking was the 10th such event in the organization's recent history. Second, and most important, Habitat for Humanity will have some help.

The new home, being built at 1006 E. 14th St. in Pittsburg, will be built with the help of labor from Pittsburg State fraternity Sigma Phi Epsilon. The organization is scheduled to give the help of at least 10 of its 62 members each of about 15 Saturdays between now and May.

"We wanted to start a bigger community service program and to include the whole house," said Brett Currier, Sigma Phi Epsilon president. "One of the guys, his girlfriend is part of the Habitat for Humanity, and that's how we got the idea to help out."

It's a rather unusual partnership for Habitat for Humanity, but organizers said the effort is greatly appreciated.

"It will be nice to have some young backs out there," said Gerald Luttrell, Habitat for Humanity construction manager. "It will help us a lot. What they don't have in expericence in construction they will make up in strength, youth and agility. We can plan it out a little better, and help make sure we get supplies out there ahead of time."

The project will go to help the McQueen family to build a new three-bedroom, two-bathroom home for them. Steve and Jessica McQueen have four children: Stasia, 6; Catrina, 5; John, 3; and Areana, 4 months.

The McQueens have already been working on their portion of "sweat equity." Each partner family must put in 400 hours of volunteer work, and the McQueens have worked as recently as this weekend to help out.

The McQueens said the new home would change their family tree for years to come.

"This is very important for us. With four kids, it's very important," said Steve McQueen. "It's a place our kids can grow up. It's a place they can grow up the rest of their lives. We won't have to move all the time. There'll be a big backyard that's safe. They'll have what we didn't have and have a constant home. They won't have to move school to school. It makes it hard to make friends if you're moving all the time. That's something we didn't have that they will."

Andrew Nash can be reached at andrew.nash@morningsun.net or by calling 231-2600 ext. 132.