LEWISTON – Work is progressing quickly on the newest project by Androscoggin Habitat for Humanity – a new house at 3 Suncrest Ave.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony on Sept. 22 marked the beginning of construction. Foundation work was completed soon after, and construction crews moved in to install floor joists and frame the structure. By mid-November, the house was closed in, windows were installed and vinyl siding was put in place.

The house will be among the largest erected by Androscoggin Habitat. It will have four bedrooms to accommodate the needs of the Moreau family, which includes Patrick and Sharon and their children, Adam, 13, Josh, 11, Brittany, 9, and Justin, 4.

The Moreaus had been living in a basement apartment in Lewiston that was condemned by building inspectors after Moreau fell through a rotted floor. A selection committee chose the Moreau family from among 28 applicants.

Patrick and Sharon are working on the house whenever they can spare time. Patrick, an experienced roofer, enlisted friends to help him put shingles on the house.

The Moreaus and their friends are contributing “sweat equity,” which is one of the rules for receiving zero-interest mortgages provided by Androscoggin Habitat for Humanity to families who meet strict requirements for the housing program.

One major reason for the rapid progress of construction is the work by students from Lewiston Regional Technical Center, who are spending two or three mornings each week building the house. Their work is supplanted by Habitat volunteers during the days when the students are in class, and on afternoons and weekends.

Help also came from 15 students who spent Nov. 12 installing siding and doing other tasks as part of a “service weekend” sponsored by a campus group known as Spring Encounters.

Paul Belisle, who chairs the Habitat Building Committee, said the students are doing an excellent job and are displaying remarkable energy. “They climb ladders with sheets of plywood really fast,” he commented.

He added that financial contributions are needed to provide Habitat with enough money to complete the house. Contributions may be sent to P.O. Box 3041, Auburn, ME 04212.

Habitat enables families to build a successful future. Using volunteer labor and donated materials and working in partnership with families whenever possible, Habitat builds affordable houses. They are sold to families at cost, with zero-percent interest loans. All mortgage payments are recycled to build the next home.

Androscoggin Habitat has built 12 houses, including two in Auburn last year, with churches and other groups and individuals providing lunch and donating items for the houses. For more information, call 786-2598.

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