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Photo Finish

Habitat World proudly shares the work of the winner and four finalists for the 2012 photo contest.

Our first-place image came via a volunteer from Gaithersburg, Maryland, whose shot captures a future Habitat homeowner completing his sweat equity hours. For her winning photograph, “Tesfaye’s Sweat Equity,” Jessica Notargiacomo was awarded a volunteer opportunity in Haiti, during the 2012 Jimmy & Rosalynn Carter Work Project in Leogane.

» View the winners from 2011

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“Tesfaye’s Sweat Equity”

Jessica Notargiacomo | Gaithersburg, Maryland

Tesfaye's Sweat Equity

One Saturday this past February, I headed out to Silver Spring, Maryland, to photograph the Potomac Rotary Club helping on Montgomery County Habitat’s first ever Pride Build home. This is where I met Tesfaye completing his sweat equity hours.

As with every Habitat build, the day was filled with hard work, laughter and positive energy. Tesfaye was very serious in his tasks, making sure to get everything in his new home perfect, but every time you’d catch his eye, a huge smile crossed his lips. And with each photograph he caught me taking of him, he would say, “thank you” and bow his head.

It’s inspiring to witness a first-time future homeowner take such pride and put so much intention into their own home. This summer, Tesfaye, his wife and their two little girls saw their dream manifest, moving out of a bug-infested apartment and into their newly renovated home.

“House #5 GV12301”

Merrill Peterson | Carlsbad, California

House #5 GV12301

Peterson has participated on several Habitat Global Village trips since 2006. The Carlsbad, California, resident captured this photo of a mason hard at work alongside her on a Habitat build in Sri Lanka.

“Doors of Hope”

Robert Cordero | Chicago, Illinois

Doors of Hope

Photo contest finalist Robert Cordero experienced firsthand the hope that Habitat’s work has brought to Joplin, Missouri. “When I heard that Habitat for Humanity would be helping families rebuild, I didn’t hesitate one second,” the Chicago resident says.

He planned to build for a week. After meeting the Klopfenstein family and hearing their harrowing story, his plans changed. “They seemed so grateful and happy to know that volunteers from all over the world came to help them build a new home,” he recalls. “I was so moved by the story that I stayed an extra four days to help out.”

His photos of the building process, he says, show the true meaning of the word “hope.”

“K Advocacy T-shirt”

Patricia Genovese | Los Angeles, California

K Advocacy T-shirt

In 2011, Patricia Genovese’s kindergarten class at Notre Dame Academy created a T-shirt clothesline to communicate the need for adequate housing around the world.

“2011 Haiti Build Site Panoramic”

George E. Stanton II | Bristow, Virginia

2011 Haiti Build Site Panoramic

Stanton captured this photograph of the Santo build site during the 2011 Carter Work Project.