Two families move into Habitat homes in Kittredge

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By Barbara Ford

Habitat for Humanity has helped two Kittredge families attain more than just homes with great views.

Both families now have a better view to a brighter future.

A ceremony was held Nov. 19 to dedicate the newly built duplex on the mountain above Kittredge and welcome the new residents to their respective sides of the dwelling.

One of the residents is Pam Rhoades, a single mother whose family has been living in a home that consumed most of her income as a nurse’s assistant at the Hospice of St. John.

It’s surreal and a dream come true,” Rhoades said. “The kids are excited, and it’s a new chance for us.”


Rhoades is grateful for the stability the home provides, and it alleviates the stress of uncertain rentals and potential high costs. She applied for the home and its no-interest loan a little over a year ago, and has participated and watched her home grow during the three-day-a-week building schedule.

“It’s safe and warm, and the mortgage is affordable.” Rhoades said.

The family’s previous home had ice on the inside of the windows during the winter and was drafty. Rhoades said she is looking forward to being able to let go of all that.

Rhoades is planning her future and wants to go to nursing school. She’s finishing up the prerequisite nursing classes at Red Rocks Community College and hopes to start her nurse’s training soon.

Rhoades’ two daughters, Sadie, a fifth-grader at Parmalee Elementary School, and Chloe, a seventh-grader at Evergreen Middle School, will live with her in the home. Rhoades’ oldest daughter is away at college.

“I want to say thank you for all the support, donations and gifts,” Rhoades said.

Rhoades and her family started moving in minutes after the ribbon-cutting ceremony and candle-lighting service were completed.

The other resident is Shelley White, a single mother with three daughters who will live on the other side of the duplex in their new split-level home.

She said she likes the home’s design and said the architect did a great job. Their plan was to move in on Saturday with the help of her daughter’s high school friends.

White works for a pet supply company that provides sitting services for pets and homes, and shared her appreciation for what Habitat for Humanity has done for its applicants.

“The concern Habitat gives us is what makes this house a home,” White said.

Habitat for Humanity works to break the cycle of poverty for low-income families.

During the dedication ceremony, both Rhoades and White were given a new Bible, a handmade quilt and a large, heavy book on home repair.

The duplexes are each 2,000 square feet and were built with mostly volunteer labor from local companies and organizations. The foundation for the duplex was laid in March and required a 750-foot-long road to be built to access the high ridge above Kittredge.

Major contributors to the project include Bank of America, Thrivent Builds Homes,

the 25th House Campaign Donors, and Genesee Entertains.

Pandora Reagan, development director for Blue Spruce Habitat for Humanity, said at the dedication that a Habitat home is not just a house but a bigger part of the picture.

“It’s important to not have to worry about the mortgage and now to be part of a community,” Reagan said.

These were the 25th and 26th houses built by Habitat for Humanity locally.

Next year’s plans include another duplex, whose walls were framed in September by Platte Canyon High School students. Those walls are in storage and will be placed on their foundation in the spring.

There is space for seven more duplexes on the same side of the mountain in Kittredge, but all will depend on fund-raisers and the future economy.