Milana McLead, editor of Habitat World magazine, has spent the last week interviewing homeowners and volunteers on the build site. The October/November issue of Habitat World will feature coverage of the Jimmy Carter Work Project 2002.
Photo by George Hipple

British Petroleum Employee
Wins Trip to Durban ‘By a Nail’

By Milana McLead

In one of the more unique paths to the 2002 Jimmy Carter Work Project, Steve Rockwell came to Durban by winning his company’s “Africa Survivor Challenge” in Long Beach, Calif. A credit advisor with British Petroleum’s West Coast Products division, Rockwell has long been a Habitat volunteer with South Bay/ Long Beach HFH.

When BP West Coast Products went looking for a charitable organization to support, Habitat was a natural choice. And after its employees, retailers and field offices caught the vision, together they raised $350,000 in just six weeks to support the cause. Then it was time to select an employee to represent BP in Durban. Thus, the four-phase Survivor Challenge.

First, JCWP wannabes had to make the cut in a trivia contest. Second, the top seven contestants were required to produce a video about why they should be selected to go to Durban. Third, five remaining participants had to build a house in 30 minutes out of Styrofoam, cork and glue. Fourth, in a hammering duel, the final two had to pound nails—flush and straight—into a two-by-four.

Rockwell won by one nail, and his journey began.

Why did he want to come to South Africa to build houses? “I like doing it,” he says. “It’s a great experience…and it’s a good thing to do.”

—Milana McLead is editor of Habitat World magazine


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