Meet Our Homeowners

Habitat for Humanity St. Tammany West Home Buyers are working members of our community. They must put in 300-400 hours of sweat equity on home construction, attend educational programs centering on crucial life skills and pay a mortgage on their homes after purchasing. Below is just one example of the over two hundred families we serve.

The McGee Family

Habitat Homebuyer As soon as Antoinette McGee began sharing her story, it was clear the excitement her children had looking forward into their future, being she could barely get a word in over her children’s enthusiasm.

“The new house will be so much better! It will be more fun, we will have our own rooms, it will be our own home and we can say we own it (unlike our current, small apartment). We can’t wait to have a backyard, bigger kitchen, living room space and a big bathtub,” Ericka said with excitement.

Antoinette is a hardworking single mother of four – Dakota, 15, twins Ericka & Jada, 12, and Makayla, 6 months – who works at the Madisonville Library Branch and is currently living in a three bedroom apartment with her mother and her four children. Her rent and utilities alone are 52% of her income, causing her to be very rent burdened.

The McGee Family is very tight-knit and family focused, which is why every night after work, school, homework and baths they always sit down and have dinner as a family.

Once they move into their new home, the children will still have the same chores they currently have to help teach them responsibility – taking out the trash, picking up after themselves, laundry and dishes.

Antoinette’s biggest cheerleader in life and on her journey to homeownership is her mother and children. “This is all for my kids. I’m their mother and I want what’s best for them,” Antoinette said.

The future is certainly bright for her children. They are involved in numerous community activities including: attending Church of the King, softball, cheering, gymnastics and basketball. Dakota is working to become an engineer or architect and Ericka has dreams of becoming a nurse.

“I want to work at Lakeview Hospital when I grow up and work in the baby nursery, but I do not want to have to give shots!” Ericka said.

When asked if the family has made any decorating decisions, Ericka and Jada enthusiastically jumped in saying they have been watching HGTV and have been looking online for ideas for their future bedrooms. They want to have a teal and/or light purple theme to their rooms.

The McGee Family is part of Women Build 2016. Women Build is a Habitat for Humanity International program that seeks to encourage women volunteers, without excluding men, to further the home building mission of Habitat for Humanity and positively impact the lives of children by making homeownership a reality for families.

Just like the mission of Women Build, Antoinette tries to empower and encourage her children daily.

“My mom is there when we need her. She always puts us first and teaches us to be who we are. She also teaches us that we can do anything as long as we try,” said Ericka.

Antoinette agreed and included, “I tell them they can also overcome anything as long as they work for it.”

The McGee Family is excited to be a part of Women Build 2016 and to be neighbors with the other Women Build future homeowner, Carly McHugh. Through numerous hours spent working together side-by-side earning their sweat equity hours working on site and in educational classes, Carly and Antoinette have become close friends and support for each other through this journey to homeownership.



The McHugh Family

Habitat Homebuyer “Owning my own home means it is mine and I will have stability. It’s not something I will have to give back and I will have something to show for all of my hard work,” said Carly McHugh.

Hard work and helping others is what Carly is all about, along with her amazing sense of humor.

Carly, originally from Michigan, moved down south to Louisiana with her fur child, Daryl the dog. She began working at the Little Red Schoolhouse in Covington as the two-year-old classroom teacher. She didn’t know it at the time, but the Little Red Schoolhouse would be the stepping stone to her future in homeownership. It is there where she was introduced to Habitat for Humanity and it’s also home to her biggest cheerleaders, encouragers and supporters on this journey.

Carly currently lives in 375 square feet with her roommate to help with the cost of rent. Her biggest safety concern of her current rental is electrical issues. The microwave and refrigerator cannot be used at the same time or a breaker will blow and have to be reset by walking outdoors. In order to open the refrigerator door, you must know exactly what you need because if the door is held open too long the breaker will blow.

“The challenge of renting is trying to find somewhere that is affordable and isn’t falling apart. Also, finding a landlord who will actually maintain the property,” Carly said.

The biggest difference between the old and new place will be space. Carly will be able to finally have company over. With her brother and sister-in-law expecting a baby in December, she will be able to host them and have space for her future niece or nephew to stay and play.

Not only is Carly excited about having company over, but she’s just as excited to decorate her own home. Carly’s favorite color is lime green and she loves anything with a moose. Her goal is to find a moose mailbox for her new home. She can’t wait to have a fenced in backyard with a patio for entertaining.

Looking into the future, Carly says,”I have learned how to save through Habitat’s homebuyer classes and once I pay off my home I will be 60 years old and will no longer have a house note. I will be able to retire with a peace of mind that I own my own home and will be able to take a vacation.”

Carly is part of Women Build 2016. Women Build is a Habitat for Humanity International program that seeks to encourage women volunteers, without excluding men, to further the home building mission of Habitat for Humanity and positively impact the lives of children by making homeownership a reality for families.

Just like the mission of Women Build, Carly tries to empower and encourage the children in her classroom daily.

“I encourage them to learn something new, use their words to communicate and at the end of every day I share something good they did with their parents when they are picked up. To see a child learn and know I taught them how to communicate or problem solve is very rewarding and empowering,” Carly said.



More Home Owners:

Johnson Family
Moritz Family
Harrison Family
Stallworth Family
Howard Family
Bunns Fairman Family
Lock Family