“I know we need the space for us, as our own little family.”

Diana is a mother of three, with her oldest son, Jacob, her daughter, Jenasis, and her youngest son, Jesiah. Diana and her family live with her mother in a two-bedroom house where her three children share one room and Diana and her mother share the other room. They struggle to fit in the house comfortably and often feel overwhelmingly crowded, especially when their family visits and needs to stay at the house too. In addition to these challenges, Diana has been struggling to manage life stressors under such living conditions.

After hearing about Habitat for Humanity from her coworker, Diana decided to reach out. She said she was nervous to submit an application but kept her faith strong. “Habitat is very supportive of their homeowners, and I felt like that’s a piece of support that I needed and that I was looking for, so I went ahead and applied.” She believes that “You just have to have that faith that no matter what you’re doing, you’re doing it for the right reasons at the right time.” Soon after submitting her application, Diana received a call for a home interview and was extremely excited. “It was a lot of emotions, just like happy emotions and excitement because I’ve never had any type of support like that.”

Diana describes Habitat’s impact as, “A lot. Everywhere. Budget-wise, lifestyle, having to learn to appreciate everybody a little bit more. This is for me and my kids.” Diana also emphasizes what home means to her, “just as long as my kids are happy and content and we have a strong foundation. The support that I’m looking for and happiness, that’s what home is.” She believes that community means family when she says, “I strongly believe that it takes a community to raise kids. […] that whoever needs help, whoever needs that type of support or that passion, it can go a long way.”

Learning to be a homeowner, with Habitat’s Homebuyer education classes, has taught her many life skills that she had not experienced in her adulthood. “Through the whole process, it’s just been an amazing experience.” She expresses her eagerness to finally have a living room for the family to enjoy spending time together, comfortably, all at once in the same room. “We’ve never had the benefit of decorating our own living room. Just having that family night or our first Christmas or Thanksgiving. That’s what I’m looking forward to.” She also mentions how her children are excited for their future home. “They want to decorate their own room, have their own way and schedule of their house. Having the comfort of being in their own home.” 

She stays motivated by reassuring herself and her family that “We’re almost there. Holding that faith, at the end of the day having the faith that we came this far. It’s just looking forward to having those keys in my hand and opening the door with everyone around me.” Diana’s certainty that becoming a homeowner will “change [my life] in so many ways because we get to learn how to be homeowners instead of just having to live in two rooms, knowing that I have a budget for it. Knowing that I learned all these skills to be a homeowner.”  

As Diana’ journey continues with Habitat, she gives others in the homebuyer program this message, “Don’t give up on yourself. Have faith. Have patience. It’s patience and learning that everything happens for a reason.”