Homebuilders and Remodelers Gather for Blitz Build Kickoff Celebration

CENTERVILLE – An event in Harwich last week brought together members of the Homebuilders & Remodelers Association of Cape Cod and Habitat for Humanity Cape Cod ahead of the region’s next blitz build.

For the third time, the organizations will partner to construct a home for a family in need in the span of a week in September.

Christine Duren, the Homebuilders & Remodelers Association executive director, said the blitz is a unique way to bring awareness to the lack of affordable housing on the Cape.

“We want to bring that front and center to the public and the policy makers, and politicians and regulators,” Duren said. “We all know we have to do something and this is a way to keep it out in front of people.”

The kickoff event at Stonewood Products last Thursday brought together over 120 members and guests of the organizations for an evening of fun and emotional moments.

“Puttin’ on a Blitz” was held to thank the members who are donating their time, skills, labor, supplies and materials to build the home in Brewster during the week of September 18.

This is the third blitz home built after the national program made its way to Cape Cod in 2012. The first was built in Orleans and the second was constructed in 2015 in Harwich.

Last month, 150 blitz homes were built across the country.

Habitat for Humanity selected the family which will occupy the completed home, which includes a single mother and her three children, who are 6, 4 and 2 years old.

“She [has worked] as a certified nurses aide for 10 years and cannot afford to live here – to find a home,” Duren said.

Jessie, the mother, thanked the association and habitat members for finally making her dream of owning a home come true during the “Puttin’ on a Blitz” kickoff event.

“It’s heart-breaking to know that a hard-working single mom, who could be the person taking care of any of our loved ones, can’t find a place to live,” Duren said. “It’s a shame, and our members are doing their best to right this wrong.”

Duren said the issue of affordable housing reaches the association’s members and is a main reason why they are having trouble finding workers.

The organizations are looking for volunteers to help out during the build by feeding workers, making cash donations or even just spreading the word.

“All of our members donate their time. They put money into it. They put in materials and supplies,” Duren said. “But there is always a cash component of things that we have to go out and buy.”

Unlike regular habitat for humanity homes, volunteers do not help build the home because of how quick it needs to be constructed.

The association begins planning the build a year in advance.

“It is a project management challenge,” Duren said. “It looks like an ant farm.”

Work that is completed before the blitz begins is the installation of the septic system, clearing of the lot and the pouring of the foundation.

“Framing and walls start going up Monday morning and the certificate of occupancy is issued on Friday afternoon,” Duren said. “We have men and women there 8, 10, 12, 14 hours a day. It’s almost a 24-7 operation.”

By BRIAN MERCHANT, CapeCod.com NewsCenter

About CapeCod.com NewsCenter

The award-winning CapeCod.com NewsCenter provides the Cape Cod community with a constant, credible source for local news. We are on the job seven days a week.

737 West Main Street
Hyannis, MA 02601
Contact Us | Advertise Terms of Use 
Employment and EEO | Privacy