Key ceremony unlocks new home for Habitat family


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A family of eight will have a bit more room to stretch their legs on Nov. 25.

Mustaf Guleid, Magda Rozmyslowicz and their six children will settle in their new home in Rosenort in a few days, just five months after volunteers hammered in the first nails on the bungalow’s frame.

“It’s surreal, you know, everything came together so quickly,” Rozmyslowicz said from the brand-new home last Wednesday. The family currently live in a two-bedroom, 600 sq. ft apartment in Winnipeg.

“You can’t fully understand exactly how much it means until you start to experience everything and you think how you can actually do things that you didn’t have the option to before.”

Habitat for Humanity, the organization responsible for the family’s new home, called it a swift project.

“I don’t know if this is the quickest turnaround in Habitat’s history,” said Carmen Fredbord, manager of family selection and support for Habitat, during the key ceremony on Zacharias Drive.

As of the previous Saturday, the recipient family completed 500 hours of “sweat equity” in just eight months to earn the affordable home. Sweat equity, which can involve committing time to assist in building their home or other Habitat projects, or working at Habitat ReStores, is part of a Habitat partnership to qualify for the low-interest mortgage.

Sandy Hopkins, Habitat’s CEO, took a particular pride in the Rosenort project.

“This one is exciting because the entire community has come together to get this built,” he said.

The five-bedroom, 1,100 sq. ft home in the town’s newest subdivision came to be largely through a Habitat partnership with K-Tec Earthmovers. The Rosenort company auctioned off a land scraper to help pay for the build with help from their suppliers who donated $50,000 worth of material to build the piece of equipment.

Shane Kroeker, director of strategic initiatives at K-Tec, said at the time of auction the gift to Habitat was part of the company’s wish to get involved with the community in a tangible way.

Within five minutes of posting the item for sale in May, Oklahoma-based company CL Boyd purchased it for US$205,000.

The home is the first Habitat project in Rosenort, though officials say it’s only the beginning for the area. The build is the third active undertaking in Southeast Manitoba this year, while 35 homes in Winnipeg, Brandon, Winkler, Morden, Portage la Prairie and Dauphin were also planned for 2022.

For Rozmyslowicz, the move brings stability. The mother said she can take up creative pursuits — like writing — she had to put on hold to keep her current space organized for her large family and allow her children to grow into themselves.

However, her first order of business in the new space is far simpler.

“I’m going to run around the giant space,” she said with a laugh.

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