Habitat for Humanity breaks ground on Westsyde home

By Vanessa Ybarra
August 3, 2017 - 5:56pm Updated: August 3, 2017 - 11:39pm

KAMLOOPS — Earlier this year we told you about two Kamloops families chosen as the recipients of this year's Habitat for Humanity home.

Like the organization itself, the home build is a project that wouldn't be possible without the help of dozens of local construction companies and many members of the community.

Thousands of volunteer hours go into building these homes and this year's project is no different.


Manpower was pouring in Thursday as local contrators, staff, family and friends donated their time helping lay the foundation for this year's Habitat for Humanity home build in Westsyde.

"Today is the jumping point to get it going,"said David Giffin, Project Manager for Habitat for Humanity. "In three weeks to a month we'll start framing the house itself."

The build is a 100 per cent volunteer project.

Companies like Noremac Concrete Pumping have been actively involved with Habitat for Humanity for years.

"We donate our concrete pumps for the concrete placement and our stone slingers for the drain rock," said Marcel Jittler, Owner of Noremac Concrete Pumping."It's a pretty easy way to give back."

For people like Jason Kennedy, he felt a personal pull to give back.

"When we were kids my Mom and Dad built their first house and when they did we had a lot of our family and community friends jump in and help out so my Mom always referred to the project as her own 'Habitat House'," said Kennedy, Owner of Casman Developments. "It's a nice way to help a family to not have the burden of trying to afford that first down payment."

Earlier this year it was announced the Watson and Harris family were the lucky recipients of this year's Habitat for Humanity home.

A duplex including a total of nine bedrooms is slated to be built on the 300 block of Westsyde Road featuring the same design as the home next door that's also a former Habitat build.

"We have eight completed homes and this home today is our eighth and ninth completed home in Kamloops," said Kim Cassar Torreggiani, Executive Director with Habitat for Humanity Kamloops.

"What we provide homeowners with is a mortage at zero percent and they're able to for the first time imagine being a homeowner and imagine becoming financially independant which is beneficial for everyone in the family."

It's an opportunity that Torreggiani says wouldn't be made possible without help from dozens of construction companies and donations of more than $200-thousand worth of building materials.

"We couldn't do it without their help" said Torreggiani. "We're so fortunate to have so many people come forward. Of course we're always looking for more people to help and appreciate every donation we receive."

The hope is to have the two families moved into the duplex by the end of the year.

It's a job and a challenge Habitat workers are more than happy to take on.

"It's a great thing to be a part of and really we're happy to be a part of it," said Kennedy. "A lot of the work is on peoples own dime and time so it's really neat to see how people have stepped up."

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