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Richard Doty

Kerry Thomson
Habitat for Humanity

Last modified: Monday, January 14, 2002

Habitat for Humanity plans diversity building project

A diversity building project by the Monroe County chapter of Habitat for Humanity is scheduled for Saturday, Sunday and Monday (Jan. 19-21) as the first of several Bloomington activities honoring the memory of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.

Representatives from the area's Christian, Jewish, Muslim and Buddhist faiths are expected to join with Indiana University international student groups for the project as a community response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11. The goal for the Habitat volunteers is to completely frame a house during the three-day weekend.

The opening ceremony for the building project is set for Saturday at 8:30 a.m. at the work location, 2415 S. Bryan St. The house, to be built for the Pete Mosora family, is near Broadview Elementary School. To reach the work site, turn east off South Rogers Street onto Coolidge, then turn right onto Bryan Street and proceed to the Habitat location.

Speakers at the ceremony will include IU Bloomington Chancellor Sharon Brehm, IUB Associate Vice Chancellor for Multi-Cultural Affairs Gloria Gibson, and Kerry Thomson, director of the local Habitat chapter.

"I am particularly impressed by Dr. King's commitment to an inclusive world perspective," Brehm said. "Such a transcendent perspective can create cooperative interactions in which the benefits for individuals and communities are so much greater than a simple addition of the specific contributions being made."

Thomson said, "We feel there is no better way to heal our local community than to bring people of all different faiths, traditions and national origins together to focus on the positive community that can be built through very simple acts. We feel it is especially appropriate for this event to occur at the time when this nation honors the memory of Dr. King."

Habitat for Humanity is an international nonprofit Christian housing ministry that has built more than 100,000 houses around the world in the last 25 years to help people in need. Habitat seeks to eliminate poverty housing from the world through action by people of all backgrounds, races and religions.

Bloomington Mayor John Fernandez, who will be working at the building site on Monday, said, "The houses built by Habitat for Humanity volunteers provide individuals and families with the opportunity to realize the dream of owning a home and the chance to become part of a neighborhood. Community service and volunteerism represent an essential part of Bloomington's character. Because of the service of Habitat for Humanity volunteers, and the service of all volunteers, Bloomington is a much better place for all of us."

The Habitat building project is part of several Bloomington events scheduled for the weekend. The city's Martin Luther King Jr. Commission has designated Monday (Jan. 21) as "A Day On, Not a Day Off," and there will be a community-wide birthday celebration that evening. Assisting the commission in sponsoring the activities are the IU Student Activities Office, the Bloomington Community and Family Resources Department, and the Bloomington Volunteer Network.

For more details on the Habitat project, call 812-331-4069. The City of Bloomington's Web site will list volunteer opportunities for Monday (Jan. 21) at