Born in Chicago, Shaquita Baker moved to Urbana with her mother, brother and twin sister when she was just 3 years old. After graduating from Urbana High School, Shaquita worked as a CNA and at Home Depot, while earning her Associates Degree from Parkland College. Currently employed by University Housing at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Shaquita hopes to start taking classes there
Andrey Nesbitt spent her early childhood years in Champaign-Urbana before moving to Chicago at age 8. In 2010, Andrey made the decision to move back to Champaign-Urbana, in the hopes of providing more opportunities for her now 16 year-old daughter, who Andrey refers to as “her heart.” Of Champaign-Urbana, Andrey says “Moving here for my daughter was the best thing because she has more
For the past four years, Tiffini Young has worked at Carle Hospital as a Certified Medical Assistant in the Pediatric Special Needs department, a job that she enjoys since she loves being around kids. It was at Carle that Tiffini first found out about Habitat for Humanity, through a co-worker who was a Habitat homeowner herself. With the encouragement of her friends, family, and
Tavell Davidson grew up in an Urbana neighborhood, attended Urbana schools, and hopes to build her new Habitat home with volunteers in Urbana. “I just love Urbana, it’s a nice place to raise my girls, (12 and 15) and I feel like it is just the right size community for me. My extended family lives within 6 blocks of one another, and I want
Jaouad and Hoda, natives of Morocco, are creating a stable life for their children through Habitat for Humanity of Champaign County’s homeownership program. Jaouad began working at Plasti Pack, and then worked at Absopure and Rantoul products before landing in his current job at Rockwell Automation where he has worked for the past 10 years. In 2006, his soon to be wife Hoda, left her teaching job in Morocco and joined Jaouad in Champaign. Hoda completed her degree in business administration technology but has chosen to stay home and raise their 4 young children.
Habitat home owner Kortinee Miller grew up in Champaign and loves having close relationships with her childhood friends from her Park Street neighborhood. ” My parents both worked and retired from Kraft, and all 7 of us kids were very connected with our neighborhood friends. I’m hoping our new Habitat home will give my daughter the same chance to live in a special neighborhood like I did.” Kortinee and her daughter have a lot of fun together, but living in what Kortinee calls an “overpriced rental home” has kept them from doing more. “I’d love to take her to see more of the country, but it’s hard when I’m working full time, going to school; and frustrating when our rent never stops going up.
Heather Rose, one of Habitat’s newest homebuyers says, “I feel like I have ‘won the lottery’ by qualifying for this opportunity to build a home with Habitat. It’s a dream come true. Habitat is doing great things in our community and I am so proud to be a part of it! I’ve worked hard and relied on God to get to this point– and I’m not going to stop trying to show the next family that they can do it too.”
Toranda McFarland has set a few important goals for her life. “I wanted to straighten out my credit, finish my college education, and own a home of my own.” It looks like she’s just about ready to accomplish all three. “ My mentor and friend Arica Moss (another Habitat homeowner) tells me I need to get some new goals, now that I am part
Johanna Briggs credits her work history with the University of Illinois Dining Services as the most significant factor in helping her provide a stable home for her family and children. “Over the past 11 years, I have built a steady income with health benefits that supported my family. Although we have lived in various subsidized housing units, our participation in the Habitat program will
Nicole Blackwell-Parker and her three children are “making it work” in a small two bedroom apartment, but she’ll be happy to move into a new home with Habitat’s help. “I have never really “won” anything in my life— but I feel like I have finally “won something very big” in being selected to build a home with Habitat!” Recently divorced, and her family income