Habitat for Humanity Detroit: Archer/McNamara Blitz Build 1997

By admin
Cleaning out old file folders I found a paper copy of the journal from my

first
ORDINAL

Habitat for Humanity

Detroit
GPE

volunteer experience: a weeklong volunteer activity at

the Archer/McNamara Blitz Build
ORG


1997
DATE

.

I forgot about my journal (it’s been over

25 years
DATE

), but remembered how excited I was to publish updates

each day
DATE

on the church website (which I managed) as part of mission outreach to our congregation.

Sadly, I only found the printout of

day 4
DATE

of the blitz build.

There weren’t any other printouts in my file folders. No files in my old computer backups.

And the church website (we moved to another church over

20 years ago
DATE

) no longer has any online info about the event.

So I’m following my own advice, to own your content, and publish my

day 4
DATE

blitz build journal on my own website.


Day 4
DATE

:

Archer/McNamera Blitz Build
ORG


1997
DATE

Hi everyone,

Remember when you used to play in the mud when you were young? Did you ever get your brother to eat one of your mud cakes like I did?

Well,

today
DATE

was supposed to be mud day.


Mud
PERSON

as in the kind of stuff you use to fill in cracks and seams of drywall, not the kind you get your brother to eat.

I spent

the day
DATE

looking for mud, carrying mud, and trying to find mudders.

I thought mudders were the people married to your fathers, but I learned mudders are very important people who have to finish their work before you can paint, trim walls, hang cabinets, and install flooring.

There’s a lot to know about mud when it comes to housebuilding.

As in there are

two
CARDINAL

different kinds, and you have to use them in a particular order.

Or it just won’t stick, like mud.

The weather was great

today
DATE

. Humidity was low.

Most volunteers stayed for

the 7AM to 5PM
TIME

shift which meant we had a lot of people who could commit to long projects.

The roof is complete and vinyl siding is almost done.


Tomorrow
DATE

is

the last day
DATE

of

the Blitz Build
EVENT

, but we’re pretty far behind schedule.

Mudders (yes, there’s that term again) arrived

late in the afternoon
TIME

to put on the

first
ORDINAL

coat of drywall mud and taping.

They’ll return

tomorrow
DATE

to add the

second
ORDINAL

coat. Then we volunteers will start to sand and finally paint.

It seems like a long process.

We had a slight mishap

yesterday
DATE

.

One
CARDINAL

of the women painting house trim had an accident when the sawhorses she used to lay out trim collapsed on her.

Yikes!

A

Detroit
GPE

police officer who happened to be driving by the house took her to the hospital.

We learned

today
DATE

she broke her ankle. She had volunteered

all week
DATE

and was one of the friendliest people working on the house.

We wish her the best on a speedy recovery. And miss chatting with her and having her as part of the crew.


Habitat
ORG

organizing volunteers put centerpieces on our tables for dinner

tonight
TIME

: bowls of licorice candy and real begonia plants.

They must know we’re getting pretty tired and that small things make a difference.

The dedication is

tomorrow
DATE


afternoon
TIME

at 3PM no matter what state the house is in.


Millard Fuller
PERSON

, the founder of

Habitat
ORG

, will be at the dedication in

late afternoon
TIME

. A crew of

20
CARDINAL

new volunteers are arriving

tomorrow
DATE

and expectations are we will get a lot done.

Keep your hopes up we’re able to get through a lot of the work

tomorrow
DATE

.

Regards,


Deborah
PERSON

About the Archer/McNamara Blitz Build

1997
DATE

Named for

Detroit
GPE

Mayor

Dennis Archer
PERSON

(who I met and photographed for

Habitat Detroit
ORG


a few years later
DATE

) and

Wayne County
GPE

Executive

Edward H. McNamara
PERSON

, the

Archer/McNamara Blitz Build
ORG


1997
DATE

was a weeklong housebuilding event held in the

Westwood Park
GPE

area, near

Evergreen
ORG

and Schoolcraft.


Over 1,000
CARDINAL

volunteers participated in the blitz build, working in crews to build

20
CARDINAL

new homes in

one week
DATE

.

As the coordinating volunteer for the build at our church, I recruited and organized a group of church members to help build a house.

For folks who are curious, can you find me in the photo?

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