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A house built with love


Robin Cooper, left, is not only the community outreach organizer for Bend Area Habitat—she is also partnering with Habitat and local volunteers to build her own home.

National Women Build Week: Bend, Oregon

My day started early. In fact, I must have woken up at least three times during the night, anxious with excitement as to what and whom the day would bring. The Women Build project for our Habitat affiliate is always very exciting and the kick-off framing day brings a large crowd of women every year who are interested in learning how to build.

My excitement comes from the fact that I am the community outreach manager for our Habitat affiliate—and I am now also a partner family. I’m a single mom of an adorable 3-year-old girl and this year’s Women Build is the home we will get to purchase!

Women started arriving at our construction site in Parkway Village at 8:30 a.m. I invited State Sen. Chris Telfer, two news anchors from our local KTVZ 21 station and other local celebrities. We also had a crew leader from Lowe’s and four other women from the community who were able to serve as leaders. In total, we had more than 75 women on site ready to build.


Volunteers raise the frames on Robin Cooper’s Habitat house in Bend, Oregon.

After a short welcome and introductions, women broke into groups and began measuring, cutting, pounding nails and by 10 a.m. we stood our first wall! What a high! The women were excited and absolutely fabulous. The weather couldn’t have been better.

I had an opportunity to work alongside two women from our local news station and they had so much fun. This was the first time they had ever volunteered with us and were trying hard to pound in a straight nail. They are doing a story that will air on tonight’s news.

Judy Ball, a volunteer, said, “This is a house built with love.” And I have to agree with her. I truly believe that it takes a community to support, encourage and nourish a family—and today, these women put in their hearts and souls to build my family’s house. I will never forget this day!

Robin Cooper is a community outreach organizer for Bend Area Habitat for Humanity, in Bend, Oregon. She has also been partnering with Habitat to build her family’s own home.

To learn more about Bend Area Habitat, visit