The Tesema and Yacob family -- Habitat for Humanity Int'l 1

The Tesema and Yacob family


Tseganesh Tesema & Ashenafi Yacob married two years ago and have since welcomed their son, Kaleb, into the world.

The joy of new people and new places

Tseganesh Tesema moved to Minnesota from Ethiopia in November 2002. When she arrived, she was taken aback by the cold and the snow. Coming from a more tropical climate, it took some time to adapt to the state’s four seasons and frigid winters. “Now I like it,” she said. “I like the snow.”

It was in Minnesota that Tesema met her husband, Ashenafi Yacob. The pair married two years ago, and they have since welcomed their son, Kaleb, into the world. Although Tesema feels their life together has been blessed, their living situation has not been ideal, leading them to pursue homeownership through Habitat.

The building where they currently live is uncomfortable for the three of them, and it allows little room for the family to grow.

Tesema had heard of Habitat through her Ethiopian Orthodox church, which the family attends every Sunday. Despite moving neighborhoods, the family will not change churches, keeping ties to the community even after settling into their new house.

Tesema and Yacob are looking forward to having the freedom to customize their home with personal touches. And they are excited to work with Habitat volunteers and crew on their new home. The on-site experience will create a valuable learning opportunity that will enhance the homebuyer classes they are taking at the Twin Cities Habitat office.

“It’s like another school!” Tesema said.