Two families in Thunder Bay, Ont., will soon be able to have their own homes by the end of the year, thanks to a generous donation of a property lot on Leith Street to the local Habitat for Humanity.
"This is going to be our biggest endeavour this year," said Habitat for Humanity Chief Executive Officer, Randy Moore. "We're building a home for 10 people. It's two single moms, each with four kids."
He said the Leith Street location was donated from a "family who had moved out of Thunder Bay," and it's a rare lot that's big enough to build a semi-detached duplex.
"The moms and each of the kids are going to have their own bedroom, there's going to be a great family room for everyone to locate, there's going to be a backyard and EcoSuperior has partnered with us and they are going to be building us a rain garden next year for the family," he added.
The home itself would cost approximately $160,00 to $180,000 to build, Moore said, but thanks to the help of local organizations and businesses donating their supplies and time, Habitat for Humanity is only paying half that cost.
The construction of the two houses is set to begin this month and the organization is hoping that the family would be able to move into their home by Thanksgiving.
Single mom Shanda Woodbeck said even while working three different jobs, she found it "very hard" to purchase a home of her own in the city.
"At this point in time, I work three different jobs," Woodbeck said, "and I picked up a lot more hours trying to get the mortgage to go to the bank, and they just say it's just not enough."
"So it's a little bit frustrating."
She said she feels that there's not enough support in the city for single moms and families like hers.
"Any type of support for families would be great." Woodbeck added. "I don't think that there's that much and I think there should be more for families ... like different programs for our children and for myself just to help us ... to be able to be at home with our kids."
Melissa Keefe said she was surprised when she found out she and her four children will also be getting a new home by the end of the year.
"It's a blessing for me and my family," she said.
As a single mom of four children, Keefe said, it has been challenging at times to work and care for her children alone but she's grateful that she no longer has to pay for rent but rather her money can go toward a home of her own.