Habitat for Humanity, Greater Birmingham Association of Home Builders and local subcontractor volunteers were in the field assisting families affected by the F-2 tornado that destroyed businesses and homes in west Jefferson County on Thursday, June 22nd.
“We start tarping houses as soon as possible after a storm,” says Jack Hake, Director of Construction Operations at Habitat for Humanity. “Our goal is to prevent further harm to homes already damaged and make minor repairs along the way. We’ll then begin rebuilding once threat of storms pass.”
Tarps were donated by United Way of Central Alabama to Habitat Birmingham following devastating tornadoes in 2011. It’s vitally important to cover damaged homes as soon as possible after a storm; tarps are stored and ready for use in a moment’s notice. Volunteers undergo specialized training to learn how to properly tarp damaged structures to prevent further, costly, damage.
By mid-morning, more than 15 houses had been tarped or repaired by volunteers. Neighbors have provided snacks and water to volunteers throughout the day. “We’re blessed to be part of a caring and compassionate community that’s willing to lend help,” says Hake. “It’s all hands on deck during times like this.”
Established in 1987, Greater Birmingham Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit, ecumenical Christian ministry serving Jefferson, Shelby, St. Clair and Walker Counties. The organization is dedicated to making quality, affordable housing solutions available to low-income families. To date, Habitat Birmingham has provided over 675 families with the opportunity of homeownership through zero percent interest mortgages on newly built or rehabilitated homes and aided over 600 households with critical home repairs, totaling more than 1,275 families served in the Greater Birmingham area. Habitat Birmingham is ranked 4th among more than 1,500 Habitat affiliates in the United States. www.habitatbirmingham.org