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National Women Build Week about to begin

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Women throughout the United States are eager to build for National Women Build Week 2010.

National Women Build Week begins May 1, with volunteers and celebrities having kicked off the nationwide effort in Houston. While the week may have started with the Houston event, the affect of this build week will be felt throughout the United States.

In North Conway, New Hampshire, a mother who watched her old home go up in flames will join friends and neighbors to help build the frames for her family’s new house.

In Knoxville, Tennessee, a woman from Eritrea, who originally came to the United States seeking medical care for an ill son, will work to place a new roof over her son’s head, too.

And in Bend, Oregon, the community outreach organizer for Bend Area Habitat will find out what it feels like on the other side of the Habitat story—when she finishes putting in the final of 400 sweat equity hours required to build her own family’s home.

Between May 1–9, these families—and about 225 others—will work alongside roughly 7,000 women volunteers across all 50 U.S. states during Habitat’s third annual National Women Build Week. The week, Women Build’s signature event in the United States, helps recruit new supporters while raising awareness of how women can address local housing needs.

Lowe’s, underwriter of the Women Build program, will once again provide a $5,000 gift card to 200 participating affiliates. National Women Build Week volunteers also attended “How-To” clinics hosted by local Lowe’s stores to prepare for the work site.

The week begins with a media event in Houston, Texas, with Grammy Award-winning gospel artist Yolanda Adams joining volunteers. Habitat will later conduct a satellite media tour May 5 from Paterson, New Jersey, where New York Times best-selling author Julie Edelman will lend her voice—and hands—to the effort.

“What we’re doing this week is a living example of one of my favorite lyrics, ‘The things we do, the things we say are gentle rays of hope that touch us all each day,’” Adams said. “I’m so happy we are able to come together as strong, capable women building more than rays of hope for our communities. We are building futures with families throughout the country.”

Check the 2010 National Women Build Week daily diary during May 1–9 to read first-hand reports sent from the field!