May 15—After recently breaking ground with the City of Marietta at 37 Griggs Street on the first of six affordable Habitat homes for City and School employees, Smyrna-based NW Metro Atlanta Habitat for Humanity announced the first three future homeowners for 2023.
Volunteers will raise the walls on the first home for the Marietta Public Service Housing Program in early June.
Methany is a Social Emotional Learning Teacher at Marietta Middle School where she has taught for more than for six years. She also serves as a Cheer and Lacrosse coach. She loves "paying it forward" as a teacher.
"I love being able to build relationships with the students and creating a safe space for them and the teachers," Methany said.
She has been married to Kelcey for almost 10 years. He has undergone health challenges that has caused him to be disabled. He does all he can at home to make Methany's life easier. The couple has one adult daughter and two grandchildren. Their daughter helps with caregiving duties and the family currently rents a too-small townhouse in Cartersville without a yard for the grandchildren. She has tried in the past to qualify for a mortgage.
Methany says when she found out she was selected; she was overwhelmed to tears.
"I feel like I've won the lottery," Methany said. "It is amazingly surreal and truly a blessing. I am super excited that my husband and I get to help...even if it's just to hammer a nail or the smallest of details!"
She is most excited to be minutes from work.
"Thank you for all that you do in the community for people like me," Methany said. "You truly are God sent, and I pray that as you continue to bless others, God will bless you even more."
Tracey has been working for the City of Marietta for almost 20 years and was the first woman employee of the Sanitation Services Division of Public Works. Her hard work and leadership paved the way to her current position of Sanitation Foreperson.
She has strived to buy a home for five years, but even with homebuyer assistance programs, has not been able to qualify for a mortgage large enough to match the rising housing costs. Tracey has a compassionate spirit and exhibits God-given love for others. She excited to have a kitchen where she can bring others together and provide space for her 85-year-old mother.
"I love my job — it has enabled me to use my CDL to help other employees (guys that work on the back of the truck) to better provide for their families," Tracey said. "It also has shown other women that they can achieve this goal ... I will always be a part of Habitat for Humanity and pay it forward."
Di' Ana is a Marietta City Schools bus driver. She says she originally chose this line of work because it provided the perfect schedule to spend quality time with her daughter Saniah, now 15. The family currently lives in an apartment in Marietta.
"I love my kids and my students are like my babies, all 100-plus of them," Di' Ana said. "The work environment at Marietta is nothing less than family."
"I want to become a homeowner because I want to break the cycle of renting and building someone else's dreams rather than focusing on my dream of providing my daughter with a forever home that we can pass down for generations," Di' Ana said.
Di' Ana says she is also super excited to help on the other Marietta houses. She says she wants to tell the sponsors, donors and volunteers how much she genuinely appreciates the opportunity the to work with them on this life-changing project.
"The beauty of the Marietta Public Service Housing Program is that it finally enables these homeowners to live where they work, as well as become first-time homeowners. We're thrilled to welcome Methany, Tracey and Di' Ana to the Habitat family and build these homes alongside them," said Jessica Gill, CEO, Habitat for Humanity, NW Metro Atlanta.
For more information, visit habitatnwma.org.