by Henry Hawthorne, IV (Age 16)

Habitat 2015-4


On Saturday, June 13, eight volunteers from First Presbyterian Church met with volunteers of all ages and churches across Wilmington who gathered on 8th Street to assist in construction of a Habitat for Humanity home for a needy member of the Wilmington community.  Volunteers (including three from First Presbyterian Church) had already completed a cinder-block foundation for the house for future volunteer groups to continue to build on.

Habitat 2015-2

Our group’s first task while at the site was to level the dirt in and around the foundation of the house and partially fill the foundation with sand.  After completing these surprisingly physically demanding tasks, the next step was to begin constructing floor joists.  For the next few hours, the constant noise of a saw blade and hammering nails resounded through   the neighborhood. Following the construction of the floor joists, a few finishing touches were made to the house in preparation for the inspection of work done so far.

Habitat 2015-3

Before the workday on the site of the Habitat home, I was expecting to simply work on the jobsite for a few hours and leave relatively unchanged.  However, during the build, witnessing and experiencing the hard work of the many volunteers and the  future recipients of the home made me feel that I was actually making a positive change in this Wilmington community.  Helping a family start fresh with a new home did not only bring on a happy feeling, but also gave me a desire to continue working to improve the lives of those around me.  Despite hard work on the build site, I feel ready to continue serving the community in as many ways as I can.

12 to Watch in 2015

Click here to read the full article.

Welcome to the 2015 edition of 12 to Watch, where the StarNews’ focuses on noteworthy people who might be high achievers this year.

See more photos - Steve Spain – 12 To Watch

The 12 honorees are all driven – to teach, to rehabilitate, to minister, to support, to lead.


Their interests are diverse. They walk different paths. Yet their passion is strong.


At the start of a new year, these stories are about their dreams and ideas for the future.



Steve Spain’s life-long fascination with the idea of home stems from a childhood with frequent moves to new locations around the world.


The executive director of Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity has now built a two-decade career working to give others a shelter, a house and a home.


After 20 years of emergency work, assisting the homeless in Boston and Wilmington and helping refugees find shelter in Afghanistan, Steve said it’s “very satisfying” to do something that feels very lasting: building houses for low-income families who are often the first generation to own a home and rarely the last.


The biggest challenge – and opportunity – Steve sees in the coming years is to have more mixed-income development that puts people of different incomes and backgrounds in the same community.


“People generally gravitate towards people like themselves, which is sort of funny because if you ask people what they enjoy about living in the city, it’s often that they’re surrounded by people who aren’t like themselves,” Steve said.

The Allison Family

Damion and Tasha Allison



This May, it has been four years since the Allison family first moved into their Habitat for Humanity home, but parents Damion and Tasha Allison are able to recount their experience with Habitat like it was yesterday.


Before purchasing their Habitat home, the Allison family lived with their children Ariyana, Darion, and Makayla in a 2-bedroom/1-bath apartment in the Jervay community. As Damion describes it, “We were packed in there.”


When they decided to look for somewhere else to live, Tasha remembers, “We searched everywhere and we went out and looked, and didn’t have any luck.” That’s when they turned to Habitat.


The Allison family was chosen that year to be the beneficiaries of one of the collegiate “builds.” Tasha describes the whole process of the build as a “blessing.” Students from four universities spent their Spring Break working to build the Allison family home. With help from family and the students, the Allisons were able to complete their 4-bedroom Habitat home by spring.


The first night they received the keys to their new home, Damion reflects, “I was so excited to have my own home that we slept on the floor here… I didn’t want to go back to the apartment. We stopped and got the kids pizza, and then we just sat here and thanked God… We couldn’t believe that it was ours.”


Since moving into their home, Damion has been promoted to the head custodian at Eaton Elementary School. Tasha is enrolled in a culinary program and works in the cafeteria at Williston. They now also have two more children, 2-year-old Alexander and 3 year old Elijah.


Their children are also very happy with their new home. When asked about his favorite part of their house, 8-year-old Darion responds with “night time.” Compared to Jervay, the children have a much more quiet place to do their homework at night, more space, and their own back yard. The children can even walk to their school, Sunset Elementary. As Damion states, it was the “perfect timing, perfect location.”


Inside their home, the importance of family and faith that the Allisons embody becomes clear. Photos from their collegiate Habitat build and family pictures cover the walls. Damion says the relationships he formed through out the build have allowed him to stay in touch with some of the students through Facebook.


Most importantly though, Damion and Tasha are hopeful of the lasting impacts that home ownership will have on their family. As Damion describes the meaning of their home, he says, “The fact that it’s something that I can leave for my children. Not just physically leave to them, but just like Tasha and I can say our parents were homeowners, so we want to be homeowners as well. We know that we will be increasing the chance of our children being homeowners. I want the five of them to have something that’s theirs.”




Thanks to the Allison family for allowing us to tell their story.

Cape Fear Habitat Thanks Volunteers with “World’s Best Cheddar”





Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity Partners with Cabot Creamery to Honor Community and Volunteerism





Contact: Jessica Loeper, Volunteer Coordinator


910-762-4744 x105


(Wilmington, NC) – Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity (CFHFH) is partnering with Cabot Creamery and the Cape Fear Cyclists on Wednesday, May 28 to honor local volunteers and celebrate Cabot’s 1,000-mile Community Tour along the east coast.  The community tour is a two-month-long celebration that includes dozens of events in cities and towns along the East Coast, from Miami to Portland, ME, each celebrating the virtues of unified communities and volunteerism.  On May 28, the tour will arrive in Wilmington with the Cape Fear Cyclists, and these riders will volunteer alongside regular CFHFH volunteers to help build a Habitat home located at 1309 Corbett Street, Wilmington, NC 28401.


Every week, more than 100 devoted volunteers help CFHFH build homes in this community.  These volunteers make Habitat’s work possible and they make a difference in the lives of our neighbors every day.  “On May 28, the Cape Fear Cyclists and Cabot Creamery riders will be another example of the generous volunteers that help Habitat further its mission in this community,” says Steve Spain, CFHFH Executive Director.


The day will begin in Southport, NC as the Cape Fear Cyclists join the Tour’s cyclists in the 35-mile trip to Wilmington.  The first leg of this journey will include a scenic ride on the Southport-Fort Fisher Ferry; and then, once in downtown Wilmington, the entire cycling team will lend a hand to help build a Habitat home.  Around noon, the Cabot Farmers’ Gratitude Grille will prepare a locally-sourced lunch using “The World’s Best Cheddar” to fuel these hardworking volunteers.  After swinging hammers and building with Habitat, the Cape Fear Cyclists will celebrate at Empie Park with a barbeque picnic at 6 p.m., featuring local chefs and Cabot products.


The 2014 Cabot Community Tour began in Jacksonville, FL on May 17 and is traveling north along the East Coast Greenway.  The 1,000-mile trek includes a team of cyclists and a caravan of volunteers, making stops along the way to partner with local communities.  The tour ends in New York City on June 21 with a grand finale celebration.



Cape Fear Habitat has a tried and tested partnership approach that makes families in need of affordable housing a key part of their own housing solution.  CFHFH works with volunteers and donors who invest time and money into the partnership – so that families can help build, then buy, their own home on terms they can afford.  Since 1987, CFHFH has been able to meet the challenge of providing safe, decent, and affordable housing with more than 155 families in New Hanover and Pender counties.



Cabot Creamery Cooperative has been in continuous operation in Vermont since 1919, and makes a full line of cheeses, yogurt, sour cream, cottage cheese and butter.  Widely known as makers of “The World’s Best Cheddar,” Cabot is owned by the 1200 dairy farm families of Agri-Mark, the Northeast’s premier dairy cooperative, with farms located throughout New England and upstate New York.  A complete 2014 Cabot Community Tour schedule can be found at cabotcommunitytour.com.



The Cape Fear Cyclists bring together individuals having a common interest in bicycling and are a voice for cyclists in this area.  The club is located in Wilmington, NC and serves New Hanover, Brunswick, and Pender counties.


For more information about CFHFH, please visit www.capefearhabitat.org or call Jessica Loeper, 910-762-4744.





Contact: Kitty Yerkes,Development Director


910-762-4744 x102



(Wilmington, NC) –PPD has answered a “Call to Action” with support including volunteer labor to construct a Habitat home, just miles from the PPD world headquarters. This is the first, fully sponsored Habitat home supported by PPD, demonstrating the company’s philosophy to give back to the community.


Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity and PPD held a Ground Breaking on February 15, 2014 at 1308 King Street, Wilmington, NC 28401. PPD volunteers will continue building the home for the next four months! The Dedication for the PPD sponsored home is scheduled for June 2014.



Habitat for Humanity has a tried and tested partnership approach that makes families in need of affordable housing a key part of their own housing solution. We work hard with volunteers and donors who invest time and money into the partnership—so that families can help build, then buy, their own home on terms they can afford.



Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity with the support of many corporate sponsors has been able to meet the challenge of providing safe, decent, and affordable housing for more than 150 families in New Hanover and Pender County.


PPD is a leading global contract research organization providing drug discovery, development, lifecycle management and laboratory services. PPD’s clients and partners include pharmaceutical, biotechnology, medical device, academic and government organizations. With offices in 46 countries and more than 13,000 professionals worldwide, PPD applies innovative technologies, therapeutic expertise and a commitment to quality to help clients and partners accelerate the delivery of safe and effective therapeutics and maximize the returns on their R&D investments.


To sign up as a volunteer or for more information about Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity, please visit www.capefearhabitat.org or call Kitty Yerkes, 910-762-4744.




Turkey Trot 5k


Contact: Kitty Yerkes

October 21, 20132                                                                                            kitty@capefearhabitat.org

910-762-4744, x 102 office

910-619-9681 cell




Register at www.capefearhabitat.org


Thanksgiving Morning, Thursday, November 28, 2013

Wrightsville Beach Park at “The Loop”

7:30 AM Registration, 8:30 AM 5KMile Run/1 Mile Walk


First 300 registrants receive a free T-shirt! Still time—register TODAY!


$25 Runner Preregistration

September 1 – October 31, 2013


$30 Runner Preregistration

November 1 – November 25, 2013 12:00 Noon

On-line registration closes at 12:00 Noon, November 25, 2013


$35 Runners

November 25 – November 28 Race Day


1 Mile Walkers – Always $15

Children 10 and under free

In order to be timed, children must be registered and pay as an adult


This is the most popular race in our area. Open to all levels—from the fastest disciplined runner to those who want to run their first 5K, including the couch to 5K folks and families running together with their children or walking the track with strollers and the family dog.


Early packet pick up Nov. 26 at Try Sports, Mayfaire, 925 Town Center Drive, Wilmington, 28405, 4-7 PM

Early packet pick up Nov. 27 at Cape Fear Habitat, downtown Wilmington, 20 N 4th St, Suite 200, 28401, 9 AM – 12 Noon


We expect hundreds to gather, some in turkey and pilgrim costumes, at the Wrightsville Beach Loop for a wonderful morning to benefit Cape Fear Habitat. Join the race/walk event get outdoors in the beautiful Wrightsville Beach park, burn some calories and get a fitness booster before sitting down to your Thanksgiving feast with family and friends. You’ll be glad you did. All proceeds will help build a Habitat home in our community.


Habitat for Humanity has a tried and tested partnership approach that makes families in need of shelter a key part of their own housing solution. Habitat works hard with volunteers and donors who invest time and money into the partnership—so that families in need of housing can help build, then buy, their own home on terms they can afford.


For more information about the Turkey Trot visit www.capefearhabitat.org

Or more about the work of Cape Fear Habitat, call (910) 762-4744

Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity Celebrates World Habitat Day

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                            Contact:               Kitty Yerkes

September 9, 2013                                                                                          kitty@capefearhabitat.org

910-762-4744, x 102 office



Saturday, October 5, 2013

502 Clay Street

Wilmington, NC 28401

8:00 AM Opening Prayers

12:00 Noon Cultural Lunch


On October 5, Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity will observe World Habitat Day with a unique volunteer opportunity. Volunteers from various faith communities will pray and work together on the construction site to provide safe, decent and affordable housing for a local family.


Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity is asking each faith community to provide 6-8 volunteers to have a work force of around 30 people. On-site supervisors will direct the work and be available with instructions as needed, so no previous construction experience is necessary.


Currently, Temple of Israel, Tauheed Islamic Temple, First Baptist Church, and Wat Carolina Buddhajakra Vanaram will be on site.


The workday will begin at 8 AM on Saturday, October 5, 2013 with opening prayers from a representative of each faith in attendance. After the opening ceremony, volunteers will be “raising the walls” at the future home of Shiletter and Family at 502 Clay Street. The day is expected to last until 2 PM. At around noon, food from the various faith communities will be served.


Habitat for Humanity has a tried and tested partnership approach that makes families in need of shelter a key part of their own housing solution. Habitat works hard with volunteers and donors who invest time and money into the partnership—so that families in need of housing can help build, then buy, their own home on terms they can afford.


For more information about the World Habitat Day, the Inter Faith Build Day or the work of Cape Fear Habitat, please contact Kitty Yerkes atkitty@capefearhabitat.org or call 910-762-4744 x102.


We’re breaking ground with First Baptist Church!










Join us this Saturday!!

You are cordially invited to attend the Groundbreaking Ceremony for

Shiletter and Family

502 Clay Street, Wilmington, NC 28405

Saturday, September 7 at 8 AM

Please join us for this celebration, when we will offer thanks to God

and seek His blessing upon this family and their new home.