INDIANAPOLIS – With a desire to help a young mother from Kenya and her three children obtain homeownership, 18 Indianapolis area United Methodist churches partnered with Metro Ministries and United Methodist Women to build their third Central Indiana United Methodist Habitat for Humanity home in as many years.
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Indianapolis and volunteers from those churches blessed the house Saturday morning, Oct. 29, of Serah Njeri and her three children: Rachel (11), Moses (6) and Jeremiah (2) at 739 South State Avenue in Indianapolis.
Ecstatic at the blessing, Serah Njeri told the more than 50 volunteers and guests assembled, “Thank you. I even painted my own house. For all your help, thank you.”
Serah immigrated to Minnesota from Kenya in 2007 after winning her right to come to the United States through a lottery program. She currently is employed as a security guard and is working to obtain her GED, after which she plans to attend nursing school. Other family members already here lived in Indiana, therefore she moved to Indianapolis. She and her family attend Calvary Temple Church.
The new Njeri home is a half block south of Calvary United Methodist Church on Indianapolis’ east side. Volunteers from the United Methodist churches began construction on the 1,200 sq. foot house in mid-September.
At the blessing, Jim Morris, president and CEO of Habitat for Humanity of Greater Indianapolis, welcomed those who came to the blessing. Ted Mosey, development coordinator of the Habitat, led an opening prayer followed by words of appreciation from staff, pastors and volunteers who served on the project working side-by-side with the Njeri family.
The event turned into a housewarming shower for the Njeri family. One church provided kitchenware. Another church outfitted the bathroom, while another provided yard tools.
The Kroger Corporation stocked the kitchen with non-perishable foods and gave the family a gift certificate for fresh foods. The family continued to receive pictures, gift certificates and other items. Youth of St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, built bookcases, framed mirrors and other items to decorate the new home.
The four-bedroom house is located on a street of older homes on the city’s eastside. Indianapolis area United Methodist churches, United Methodist Metro Ministries and United Methodist Women helped finance the $70,000 project. Churches included: Abundant Harvest, Acton, Avon, Broad Ripple, Castleton, Chapel Hill, Epworth, Fishers, Horizons of Faith, Lawrence, Meridian Street, North, Old Bethel, Shirley-Wilkinson, Southport, St. Luke’s and St. Mark’s Carmel.
Other churches in the project were the First Christian of Beech Grove, Faith Presbyterian and Zionsville Presbyterian. A total of 25 other groups and companies helped with in-kind services.
Phil Myers of Phil Myers Custom Homes led the project as construction supervisor. He and his wife, Susy Komenda-Myers, are members of Castleton United Methodist Church, a congregation that played a significant role in bringing the project into being.
For more information and pictures about Habitat for Humanity Greater Indianapolis, visit www.indyhabitat.org.