Employees from Cherokee Nation and Cherokee Nation Businesses install soffits and siding on a Habitat for Humanity house in Tahlequah. About 30 employees volunteered their time to work on the house over two days
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. –Employees from Cherokee Nation Businesses and Cherokee Nation recently teamed up with Pepsi and Tahlequah Area Habitat for Humanity to help build a new home for a Tahlequah family. About 30 employees joined Habitat for Humanity volunteers to complete tasks, including attaching soffits and siding, painting, and building a privacy fence and sidewalk outside the home.
“We are honored to help families achieve the American dream of homeownership,” said Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker. “The Cherokee Nation has partnered with Tahlequah Area Habitat for Humanity for many years, but this project gave our employees the opportunity to come out, put some sweat equity into it and make a positive impact on their community.”
When finished, the five-bedroom, two-bath home will provide future homeowner, Estafana Ledezma, and her six children a safe and stable place to call their own.
Volunteers shared a common excitement about helping the family.
“Imagining the happiness this home will bring a family makes the hard work more than worth it,” said Gina Edgar, food and beverage manager at Cherokee Casino Tahlequah. “It is a great feeling to come together and accomplish something like this.”
Habitat for Humanity works to provide families with decent, safe and affordable places to live, regardless of age, race or religion.
“We’re very happy to have Cherokee Nation here,” said George Fulk, co-founder of Tahlequah Area Habitat for Humanity. “As our largest donor, they continue to reach out even beyond the Cherokee people to help the entire Tahlequah community.”
In 2012, Cherokee Nation Businesses employees dedicated more than 4,000 volunteer hours to community projects.
“We are very proud of our employees and all of their volunteer endeavors,” said Shawn Slaton, CEO of Cherokee Nation Businesses, who spent the day with employees working on the home. “They do a great job in helping communities throughout the Cherokee Nation.”
Construction on the Ledezma home, known simply as House 20, is expected to continue through the summer. The organization expects to finish the home in October, at which time all volunteers will be invited to return for a house blessing before the family moves in.
For more information on volunteering or donating to Tahlequah Area Habitat for Humanity, please visit www.tahlequahhabitat.org.
Cherokee Nation News Release
Julie Hubbard - 918-207-3896
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