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Winona Daily News Stories for Good: Habitat for Humanity builds with MSC Southeast

By Jessi Darst, Habitat For Humanity, May 24, 2021

Habitat House 2021Habitat for Humanity Winona-Fillmore Counties has once again partnered with MSC Southeast's Construction Technology program to bring affordable housing to the Winona area. This relationship began four years ago and has been growing ever since.

Last month, Habitat broke ground on House No. 52 here in Winona. The Construction Technology students jumped into the project to pour concrete, frame walls, and put a roof on top of the structure.

"The students love being on site and getting to build something from the ground up," said MSC Southeast instructor Jon Powell. "In the partnership with Habitat, we get to do a project and serve the community at the same time."

The initial stages of construction can include some heavier lifting that the students are especially well-suited to complete. The ability of the students and their instructor to show up on the worksite every day to build scaffolding and rake gravel moves the project quickly through to the next phase.

Habitat's John Corcoran, director of operations and construction, said this venture with MSC Southeast allows Habitat to double its building capacity. Together they are planning to expand their partnership to include a yearly rural home build.

The Construction Technology students completed their spring semester on May 12. The house is now a solid, enclosed structure where volunteers of all abilities can safely work.

Corcoran sums up the partnership with this thought: "Habitat's purpose is to engage the entire community -- businesses, churches and individuals. This partnership allows us to include students as well."

Habitat's continuing vision is a world where every person has a decent, safe place to live. This includes energy-efficient, affordable home repairs and construction. Habitat for Humanity Winona-Fillmore Counties was founded in 1994 and includes the ReStore, open to the public at 900 W. Third St.

To get your service club, coworkers or faith community connected with Habitat for Humanity, please visit or call Jessi Darst, volunteer & marketing coordinator at 507-703-0015.

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