LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - A Lake Charles woman, Abigail Brignac, is celebrating her journey to home-ownership with the help of Habitat for Humanity and other community partners after officially receiving the keys to her new home during a dedication and blessing ceremony Monday.
Four years of patience, 300 hours of sweat equity and volunteer classes, and a whole lot of faith finally paid off for Brignac and her family, a life-long resident of Southwest Louisiana.
“They say it’s never too late to accomplish your dream but I am so overwhelmed with joy,” Brignac said.
Monday’s dedication held by the Calcasieu Area Habitat Chapter was put on not only to show the community the finished home but to signify all the hard work that it took for Abigail to get there.
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“For Ms. Brignac to now move into her home after waiting a number of years, it’s just exciting,” Ralph Williams, Board of Directors’ President for the Calcasieu Area Habitat, said.
With this home being the first community build of 2019, Williams said he just wanted it to reflect what the organization is all about.
For Brignac, it’s a blessing that goes beyond the Easter holiday. She said she’s looking forward to moving into the home this week.
“I applied for the program four years ago, it takes a lot of sacrificing, a lot of patience,” Brignac said. “It wasn’t a handout, I had to do my part to become a homeowner to get to this point, I had to go to numerous classes and compete 300 sweat equity hours.”
Sweat equity can take many forms for partner families working with Habitat. It can mean construction work on their home or on a home for another family, cleaning up the build site, working in a Habitat ReStore, assisting in administrative duties, or countless other ways of helping out. Homeowner classes, learning how to manage a home or finances, also count as sweat equity.
The time sacrificed while being a single mother of two is a true accomplishment, not only for Brignac, but her daughter as well, according to Abigail.
“One day she’s going to become an adult and it’s going to motivate her to do better than what I have done,” Brignac said.
For Williams, he said seeing the end result of the build under the direction of a new board is a big accomplishment for their chapter.
“With the restructuring and new board we always want to do the best we can and with the first home starting off we were a bit nervous," Williams said.
Even though it took some time and numerous years of paying rent, Brignac said she’s just thankful for the journey.
“Now that I’m a homeowner now, it’s just an awesome feeling to be paying for something that’s mine," Brignac said.
Brignac’s home is the first Habitat for Humanity build in the Lake Area for 2019.
Habitat for Humanity Calcasieu is currently working on a new build in Jennings. The organization is slated to dedicate two more homes this year.