Fluvanna County Habitat for Humanity gears up for 24th annual golf tournament in April

By Madeline Otten

Fluvanna County’s Habitat for Humanity will host a golf tournament in April to raise money to support the development of Houchens Place, an affordable housing community in the county with energy efficient homes and a well-appointed recreation area.

Fluvanna habitat’s 24th annual golf gournament will be held on April 25 at the Lake Monticello Golf Course to help raise funds to complete its next and future projects. Registration costs $65 per player and the deadline to register is by April 23. The capacity will cap at 112 players who will be divided into 28 teams. Fees include green fees, golf cart, golfer gift bag, contest participation, awards, food, and beverages. Gunshot time is 1 p.m. and all players will tee-off on each hole with the team captain designating the “best drive” for the hole.

Houchens Place is located off Rt. 600, just beyond CVS and right before Lake Christina Church and has enough room for 28 houses. FCHFH recently dedicated its 24th Habitat home in Fluvanna County, which was the fifth home located in Houchens Place. Donations will also help with the home repair program for seniors and to help the disabled to stay in their homes longer.

Another way the community can help, besides making donations, is through sponsorships, which have eight different levels, ranging from hole sponsor ($150) to named sponsor ($3,500).  Each level has different perks for sponsors to take advantage of such as the tent and habitat sponsorship that gains two player entries into the tournament; tournament banner recognition; one hole with sponsor signage; sponsor signage on golf tournament advertising; print and social media coverage that include logo; logo on the FCHFH website, and recognition during the tournament as well as in the event day brochure. Sponsors can find a list of the different levels in the tournament’s brochure, which can be accessed from the FCHFH’s website or picked up at the Pro Shop at the Lake Monticello Golf Course.

“It is going to be a fun, non-competitive tournament,” said Vice President of the FCHFH Board Rich Bowman. “If you really like helping your fellow man, this is a way to do it because you get to see where your donations go. And it is even more rewarding when you get to meet the new owner of the house.”

FCHFH builds two single-family homes a year; one during the spring and one during the fall. The sponsorships from the tournament will ensure FCHFH has the resources to help more families than ever before. All FCHFH projects need money to help purchase materials to build the homes, volunteers for the building aspect of the project, as well as expertise.

“Lots of people have lots of skills, and we need them,” said Bowman. “Fixing things can sometimes be harder than building new.”

Volunteers are a huge deal for FCHFH since it only has two paid employees, one of them being the contractor. Volunteers do not need to have construction experience because volunteers are given on the job training the morning of the workday.

FCHFH is part of a global, non-profit housing organization with a vision to have a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Its mission is seeking to put God’s love into action, and brings people together to build homes, communities, and hope. The non-profit is dedicated to eliminating substandard housing locally and worldwide. For open construction sites where power tools and/or ladders are being used, the minimum age to be on site is 16 years old. Volunteers must be 18 years or older to use a power tool or be on a ladder. For those who are interested in yard work and painting, the minimum age is 14 years old.

Those who qualify and are selected for a Habitat home must also put in 150 hours with Habitat, which can be fulfilled by helping in the construction of their home or any other kind of volunteer work with them; by completing a “homebuyer’s course” to help with budgeting and basic knowledge that any homeowner needs before purchasing a house; by completion of a financial education course provided by Habitat; by obtaining a 640 or higher credit score that Habitat will work with the new homeowner(s) to achieve, and with a home down payment before closing. After closing the new homeowners must make on time monthly mortgage payments, maintenance and repairs to the home once moved in, and communicate with Habitat if contact information has changed.

In June of 1993, FCHFH was officially recognized as an affiliate with Habitat for Humanity and two years later had their first homeowners move into their new home. From 1995 to 2009, FCHFH built nine more homes throughout the county and to date has completed 24 homes.

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