BYU and UVU women team up to build home for family in need

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Women from BYU and UVU teamed up on Wednesday, May 7, to help Habitat for Humanity provide a home for a family in need.

Page Holland (Center) stands with other Habitat for Humanity volunteers.
Page Holland (center) stands with other Habitat for Humanity volunteers. (Photo by Elliott Miller)

Habitat for Humanity is renovating the historic George Taylor Jr. home at 187 N. 400 West in Provo. When finished, it will become the new home for the Blair family. Habitat for Humanity selected the family last August to buy the home.

This is the fourth year BYU and UVU women have participated in Habitat for Humanity’s annual National Women Build Week.

“Every year we’ve had the opportunity to do it, we’ve done it,” said Paige Holland, wife of UVU President Matthew Holland. “This is a worthy cause to help a family in need.” She said the opportunity for UVU and BYU to work together on this project has fostered a “great feeling of community spirit.”

The UVU Women’s Success Center hosts the event. “We pay the fees so that BYU and UVU women can come together to do this work,” said Peggy Pasin, coordinator of the UVU Women’s Success Center. The fees include a $25 donation to Habitat for Humanity that provides the women with a T-shirt, lunch and an invitation to the Women Build Week party at week’s end.

Women from both universities worked side by side to renovate the historic home. Bonnie Anderson, an associate professor of information systems at the BYU Marriott School, expressed her excitement as she pried up old floorboards with a crowbar. “I usually build websites, but now I’m building houses,” she said.

Although few of the women who volunteered have experience in building houses, they were happy to learn and serve. “I’ve learned how to do a lot of things I never thought I’d be doing. … Power tools are my specialty,” Paige Holland said with a laugh.

“It’s a fun week,” said LeAnn Hillam, the Habitat for Humanity of Utah County programs coordinator. “I love it. It’s my favorite week.”

Hillam said that by the end of the week, about 150 women will have participated in the project. She expects the home to be completed by the end of August this year.

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