Homeownership is the bedrock of Habitat’s mission; every day, we seek to put God’s love into action by building affordable homes, community, and hope. Along this journey we have the opportunity to partner with amazing families who want to make the dream of owning their own home a reality. Rachael is the proud mother of two growing boys, and she strives to provide a safe place for them to call home. She knows that there’s nothing like having your own, and is determined to create a better future for her family.
Rachael is a proud CNA and has worked in the healthcare system for over fifteen years. She currently works at Sumter Health and Rehabilitation Center and loves what she does! “It takes nothing away from me to help others. If anything, it adds to my life,” says Rachael when asked why she chose the healthcare field. Her two boys, RaShawn, who is fifteen years old, and Christian, who is seven years old, both adore music! RaShawn plays percussion in school and uses his talents to give back to God by being a musician at their church. Additionally, both Christian and RaShawn sing in the choir at church. As a family, they all enjoy praising God together, and sing-a-longs on car rides.
Becoming a mother is one of the most defining moments in Rachael’s life. When she had her first son, RaShawn, she knew that her life was no longer her own, so she devoted herself to being the best mother she could be. When she birthed her second son, Christian, she felt those same feelings all over again and it drove her to become even more diligent on her journey through motherhood. She became more giving, more responsible, less selfish, and more loving and she owes it all to the two loves of her life, her boys.
Rachael decided to partner with Sumter Habitat for Humanity for the safety of her children. The neighborhood they currently live in often experiences loitering which causes her to frequently question her family’s safety. “It is my duty as a mother to keep my boys away from hurt, harm, or danger, so applying for a Habitat house simply was the right thing to do,” Rachael often says.
While working towards homeownership, Rachael has thoroughly enjoyed meeting and working alongside so many different community volunteers as well as other Habitat partner families. “Although I’ll be receiving a Recycled Habitat Home, I still enjoy building homes for other Habitat families. I sign up to go on the construction site every chance I get. From working with the college students during Collegiate Challenge, to meeting and working with Sumter Utilities, to seeing ALL the different groups that volunteer from Shaw Air Force Base really showed me that this truly is a community effort and I’m grateful that I have the opportunity to be a part of something that is much larger than myself.”
Rachael is super excited to complete her sweat equity hours so she can finally say she is a homeowner! “Getting a mortgage is a huge step! That means it will be mine, and I’m not borrowing or leasing from someone else. Having a yard for my boys to run and play in if they choose to and knowing that it’s safe is a feeling I’m looking forward to experiencing.”
To anyone thinking of applying to the Sumter Habitat for Humanity Homeowner Program, Rachael says this: “Take it seriously and never give up. It’s going to be a long road, but a road worth traveling.”