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      New homes build up residents' lives

      Latanja Greene is sawing off ties with her old flood-damaged home and, board by board, building a new future.

      The floors were rotted, very weak; you can hear it squeaking and everything. So coming from that kind of house to a semi-brand new house, it TMs just very exciting, says Greene.

      In a few days, she TMll be living in her new home, courtesy of the Flint River Habit for Humanity and Mission Change. The two organizations teamed up on Saturday to help fix four houses in a local subdivision on Forsythe.

      The issue of poverty in our community is right on the forefront. We take an active role in that and supporting agencies like Flint River Habitat to provide an awesome volunteer source, says David Blackwell, Mission Change Project Coordinator.

      With Habitat, we TMre always fortunate the volunteers come through but Mission Change is a great group. They come out here and work hard and we love having them, says Flint River Habitat for Humanity Executive Director Stacey Odom-Driggers.

      Some houses were built from the ground up; others had to be gutted. These aren TMt the first houses Habitat for Humanity has built in the neighborhood on Forsythe Road. The group has built 60 of the houses there. Flint River Habitat has built 130 houses total.

      Odom-Driggers says working on projects like these with Mission Change, is a natural collaboration.

      Mission Change is going out trying to change the world from their own backyard and they focus on local projects, focusing on the needs of the city, housing of course is a huge need in Albany, she says.

      We try to create an opportunity for the community to be involved with those issues of justice in our community, of poverty, of homelessness and hunger, says Blackwell.

      And one local resident is thankful, saying her new house is giving her a new start on life.

      I feel like I have moved up, God has moved me, touched me and blessed me. And it TMs my time, it TMs my season and I just thank the Lord, says Greene.

      To volunteer with Mission Change, visit their website here. To help Flint River Habitat for Humanity, check out their website here.