DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT)- Imagine 300 strangers working together for months, all to give you a new residence.
That was the case today, when Decatur resident Barbara Crayton was handed a set of keys as she heard the words 'Welcome to your new home.'
"I'm just glad to be in a new home and I can say it's my own," said Crayton.
She's the homeowner of the 70th home completed by the Morgan County Habitat for Humanity. The home was formally dedicated to Crayton as she was surrounded by sponsors, new neighbors, old friends, and volunteers.
"To contribute to raising the roof, raising the walls, it's just a heartwarming feeling," said volunteer Annette Beauchamp. "She has been helping Habitat for Humanity for more than five years and loves to contribute to the lives of others. I know she's just beaming with pride and very grateful."
Crayton is grateful and emotional about her new home, new keys, and new Bible -- all of which she received from Habitat from Humanity.
"By far the most rewarding day is the day we dedicate the home and the homeowner takes the keys and they get to move into their new home," said construction manager Marlon Morris.
Crayton's friends and supporters cheered when she unlocked her front door for the first time. The guests were invited inside to tour the three bedroom, two bathroom home.
"To Habitat [for Humanity], to everyone that had a hand in it, they have my love, and they have my blessing," said Crayton.
She moved into her house immediately after the dedication ceremony. Meanwhile, the house next door, another Habitat for Humanity project, is set to be dedicated to its owner in two weeks.
"In the fall we start after Labor Day," explained Morris. "It's our goal to get our families in the home by Thanksgiving so they can have Thanksgiving dinner in their own home."
Eight intense weeks of construction has paid off, and the nw homeowner already has plans to get busy in her new kitchen.
"Anytime anyone wants to stop by to see if I have a pot of green cooking, they can come on by," said Crayton with a laugh.
Habitat for Humanity builds homes in the spring and in the fall to avoid harsh weather for their volunteers. After applicants are accepted, they have to bank 400 hours of 'sweat equity,' during which time they work towards creating a home for someone else.
The Decatur neighborhood where Crayton now lives has three homes completed by the Christian philanthropic organization. The donated land has more than 20 more lots where homes and families will be placed.
This is the seventieth home completed by the Morgan County Habitat for Humanity. The house energy-efficient and compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), including wider doorways and a handicap shower.