By SEAN ROWLEY
As part of efforts to raise funds for its 2014 projects, Tahlequah Area Habitat for Humanity held a raffle and drew its winner on Tuesday.
Carlos Brown of Tahlequah was awarded a handcrafted, youth-sized, competition-quality kayak, built by Jerry Catron, a member of the Habitat for Humanity board.
Armstrong Bank, BancFirst and Arvest Bank sold tickets for the kayak, which was valued at $2,000. The drawing was held at BancFirst downtown, on the northwest corner of Keetoowah Street and South Muskogee Avenue.
“Jerry did this as a way to help us raise funds - it was his idea,” said Nan Jones, TAHFH treasurer. “These funds are used to help us build our next house and to make critical repairs to homes of families which meet our income guidelines.”
Jones said the organization had begun the selection process to determine the next home to be built by TAHFH.
“The homeowners we are considering for 2014 attended a class and submitted an application,” she said. “We are looking at three applicants. We will select one, and the others will remain as potential alternates.”
TAHFH can also help people in need of home repair who cannot afford the full expense.
“If they meet guidelines, we can assist homeowners with critical needs,” Jones said. “We can repair a roof, install energy-efficient windows, insulation, replace electrical wiring. Last year, we rewired a house that had wiring dating to the 1920s.”
Habitat for Humanity tries to keep repair costs low and avail homeowners to loans.
“We try not to go over $15,000,” Jones said. “The homeowner still must assist us with expenses they can afford. Often, we take a mortgage on the house in the form of a zero-interest loan and give the homeowner enough time - a 10 or 15 year period - to keep the payments low.”
Upcoming events for TAHFH include the Donor Recognition Dinner on Oct. 12 at 6 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church, 315 E. Shawnee St. The dinner is covered dish and attendees are asked to bring something to share. Beverages, paper and plastic will be provided. Visit tahlequahhabitat.org to RSVP online.
TAHFH accepts donations of funds, supplies, furniture and other materials appropriate for building and rehabilitating homes. Those interested in donating or joining can call (918) 453-1332, (918) 931-7828 or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.