The three-home community will be named for Jesse and Carol Green, longtime Habitat supporters.
The morning sun was warm but a breeze kept guests cool under the shade trees Saturday, July 29, as West Orange Habitat For Humanity held a groundbreaking for Green Oaks Row.
The community of affordable homes for low-income families is located at the northeast corner of East Bay and 10th streets in Winter Garden. Three homes will be built in the Craftsman style and will have two stories and three or four bedrooms. Construction is expected to start in September.
More than 75 families applied for the homes, according to West Orange Habitat president Jim Gustino. Two recipients have been selected: Victoria Grace and Shellonda Hill. The selection committee still is working on naming the third family.
Grace is a real-estate transaction coordinator. The single mother shares a bedroom with her three children, Joy, 9; Victor, 5; and Vera, 1, while they are living with extended family.
Hill, also a single mother, has three children: Ja’Mya, 18, who attends college; Charles, 16; and Ny’lah, 6. She has worked for nine years at a medical office and is attending Valencia College. They currently live in a small home with other family members.
The trio of houses will be known as Green Oaks Row and is named for the late Jesse and Carol Green, former Windermere residents and longtime supporters of West Orange Habitat. Jesse Green became involved with the organization in the late 1990s and worked on more than 20 Habitat homes in West Orange County. He served as president from 1998-99.
Their grandson, Cody Rice, spoke at the event and said his grandfather always told people, “Measure twice, cut once.”
Jesse Green was also known for redoing some of the construction work on the projects to make sure the houses were perfect for the homeowners.
“We are thrilled to celebrate the groundbreaking of these Habitat homes in our community,” Gustino said. “We foresee these three homes as an anchor for our future plans in the historic east Winter Garden area, and we are incredibly excited to be working with the city of Winter Garden as it rolls out its visionary plans for continued enhancements to the area.”
West Orange Habitat has built, renovated and repaired more than 40 homes since 1990. Families are selected based on three primary criteria: need, willingness to partner and attend classes and ability to repay a no-interest mortgage.
Contact Amy Quesinberry at [email protected].