It was cloudy, rainy, windy but the weather didn’t hamper a special visit to Lacombe.
Lacombe residents and dignitaries gathered at a construction site in the MacKenzie Ranch subdivision to welcome Lieutenant Governor of Alberta Lois Mitchell to city last Friday.
On her first official visit to Lacombe, Mitchell, along with Mayor Steve Christie, Habitat for Humanity Chair Dennis Bowman, MP Blaine Calkins, MLA Ron Orr attended a sod-turning ceremony to celebrate the beginnings of the very first Habitat for Humanity project in the city
Habitat for Humanity Red Deer is a not-for-profit organization that works towards creating sustainable affordable housing in the Central Alberta area. The organization will be building four units (two duplexes) in the MacKenzie Ranch subdivision of Lacombe over this next year.
In her remarks to the crowd, Mitchell said it was a pleasure to launch the new project in Lacombe. She also said she was impressed with the powerful way Habitat for Humanity can mobilize volunteers.
“A Habitat for Humanity project is a great way for all volunteers to share the best of their ability by learning and forging new ties with friends and neighbours,” she said. “So to all the volunteers, thank you for sharing your time, your skills, your energy, your dedication to building a greater quality of life for everyone in the community.”
Mayor Steve Christie said he was honoured and very pleased to welcome Mitchell to the community.
“I am also proud of the strong partnership we have developed with Habitat for Humanity Red Deer Region Society to address housing affordability for low income families in Lacombe,” he said.
“A succession of events have brought us together today that began with a vision to facilitate a diverse range of housing opportunities here in the City. This is a program that supports the needs, income levels, preferences, of all current and future residents.”
MP Blaine Calkins also added it was a pleasure to welcomed Mitchell and her husband on their first official visit to Lacombe.
“Their presence here today indicates that there is a great deal of support for the efforts of Habitat for Humanity Red Deer Region, and that support will certainly go a long way in helping Habitat for Humanity reach their goal of at least 10 homes for new eligible low income families in Central Alberta in 2015,” he said. “I am pleased they could attend this important sod-turning event here in Lacombe, which will support four families in my hometown.”
In June, the City of Lacombe entered into an agreement with Habitat for Humanity Red Deer for a $300,000 grant contribution from the City’s affordable housing project. Once the units are completed, the homes will provide four qualifying low-income families the opportunity for home ownership.
As per the Habitat for Humanity family selection process, a public gathering will be held next month in order to select the four families for the homes. The process will begin in September, allowing the City and Habitat for Humanity to select the four families and also allow the families to work off their volunteer hours before they move in one year.
The homes are expected to be completed in Aug. 2016.