Habitat for Humanity delivers new home just in time for Christmas; STGnews Videocast

ST. GEORGE – Habitat for Humanity of Southwest Utah held a ceremony celebrating the completion of Patty Christensen’s new home Thursday evening. The house is located on West 300 South in historic downtown St. George, and took close to a year and a half to plan and build. Thousands of hours of fundraising and volunteering went into the creation of the home and was built with donated materials and labor.

Having been through many hardships in life, Christensen was overjoyed with emotion as friends gathered to welcome her to her newly finished home. Habitat for Humanity worked in partnership with the City of St. George to build the house, which now stands on a lot that once held a condemned house.

The construction manager Mark Hatch was pivotal in the building process, Habitat’s Southwest Utah Board President Sommer Bowler said. The two bedroom, one bath home is built to federal Americans with Disabilities Act standards, so Christensen can accommodate her mother and other members of her family.

Habitat for Humanity of Southwest Utah began it’s affiliation with Habitat for Humanity International in 1998 and Christensen’s home is the 21st home the organization has provided. All 21 homeowners make a small down payment and an interest-free mortgage. All mortgage funds go towards future builds for other deserving families.

“We are not a giveaway program,” said Bowler. “We’re a hand-up, not a hand-out.”

The typical value for homes the program builds ranges between $119,000 and $145,000, taking into account donations, volunteer hours, labor and material.

Before Thursday’s short dedication ceremony began Thursday, Habitat Southwest Utah’s Executive Director Stacey Maziarz was full of joy for Christensen.

“We’re excited that the home was finished before Christmas,” Maziarz said, “and that for the first time in her life she will be able to be a homeowner. She made a lot of sacrifices and a lot of changes to get to this point.”

St. George News videographer Leanna Bergeron contributed the videocast for this report.


  • Habitat for Humanity of Southwest Utah | Telephone 435-674-7669 | Website | Volunteers and donations welcome

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  • Darren December 20, 2014 at 7:28 am

    Enjoy your new home and best wishes to you and your family in the coming years.

    Merry Christmas.

  • koolaid December 20, 2014 at 8:11 am

    How do I get a free house?

    • Kibblesnbits December 20, 2014 at 9:21 am


    • Joe Smith December 20, 2014 at 9:53 am


    • My Evil Twin December 20, 2014 at 10:07 am

      You don’t, and neither do the recipients of these houses. Read the article. It is unfortunate, but there are many people who actively fight these homes being built. Among them, are the SG mayor and some of the city council.

      • Stacey Maziarz December 20, 2014 at 11:35 am

        The City actually partnered with us on Patty’s home. They were a wonderful partner. While some people may have negative feelings, they are usually caused by misconceptions about who we are and what we do. Thanks for caring about Habitat.

        Stacey Maziarz
        Executive Director.
        Habitat for Humanity of Southwest Utah

      • Kibblesnbits December 20, 2014 at 12:34 pm

        Your a liar evil twit ha ha you got caught telling a lie..

        • My Evil Twin December 20, 2014 at 7:05 pm

          Perhaps misinformed this time, but not a liar. I’ll leave all the lying to you, little kibblesnsnot.

          • Kibblesnbits December 21, 2014 at 12:49 am

            Your a liar ha ha ha you got caught telling a lie.. LOL. I love it.

  • Stacey Maziarz December 20, 2014 at 10:32 am

    dear Koolaid,

    Just want to clear up your misconception. This is not a free house. Habitat provides a hand up not a handout. Our partner families provide 250 hours of sweat equity, per adult, working on their home. They must be credit worthy, have a small down payment, and repay the total cost of the home with a 30 year interest free mortgage.

    We are a Christian ministry whose mission is to help hard working, lower income folks, afford a home of their own. The security and permanence the home provides, gives the family stability and creates a stronger community for us all,

    To learn more about Habitat for Humanity of Southwest Utah, please visit: http://www.habitatswu.org

    Stacey Maziarz
    Executive Director
    Habitat for Humanity
    Of Southwest Utah

  • Not sure about this December 20, 2014 at 11:51 am

    I have mixed feelings about this, I know of two separate houses where the one lady was pregnant and would not marry her boyfriend until she got the house. The other worked under the table until his house was done so they could finish college. So I work and my wife work our tails off so we could get a home and these people get to walk into a intrest free home and a low payment. Ask anyone and they would all put in hours on there house if they could get it intrest free. I do believe in the concept however I am sure their is always that slim few that are okay cheating out a good thing. I guess these to just put a bad tast in my mouth.

    • Stacey Maziarz December 20, 2014 at 3:06 pm

      I have no knowledge of the circumstances you are relating. I do know that we have a rigorous family selection program. I urge you to become more involved with our organization and see if your opinion doesn’t change. You would be hard pressed to find more dedicated staff and volunteers than those with Habitat. It is a mission we deeply believe in and one that changes lives.

      Stacey Maziarz
      Executive Director
      habitat for Humanity

    • Koolaid December 20, 2014 at 4:47 pm

      Remember that couple who got one of these houses for themselves and their kids and one of the first things she said was they were going to have more kids? Wowsa! This culture breeds unchecked breeding cause fundraisers, welfare and charities got them covered.

  • Koolaid's little brother December 20, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    I remember an Executive Director of Habitat on the radio a few years ago saying that they had done 16 projects in 16 years in the St. George area. I remember wondering how much the Director and other salaried positions are making in income and benefits. I thought to myself that this ratio of one project per year for a director and others pulling a salary is a little out of whack with what kind of production is necessary in real world economics vs. “non profit” economics. I know that Habitat is a “feel good” project but I wonder sometimes if it isn’t more about non profit employee salaries rather than true compassionate giving. I suspect that the Lion’s share of donations goes to salaries and overhead. I’m not saying I am against it but I wonder sometimes how efficient some charities are at getting the donations to where they need to go having to go through the “non profit” machine first.

    • Joe Smith December 20, 2014 at 3:22 pm

      Most “non-profits” work like that. Some of them pay their executives and administrators millions of dollars in salaries and bonuses. America is about $$$, and pretending like your doing good things in the process of making more $$$ is what America is about. That’s just the way it is until someone cleans up the “non-profit” business, which I guarantee will not be republicans…

      • Defender December 20, 2014 at 9:22 pm

        Li’l Joey, you are the true definition of a whacko! And I do say “Li’l” because of your small mind and juvenile comments. What you call “pretending” is for most non-profits one helleva lot of work doing a whole lot of good for their communities. The fact that you troll this site day in and day out suggests you likely do little to no good for your community at all. You are welcome to share whatever opinion you have; it just happens to be a pinheaded opinion.

  • ICALLRaiseYa December 20, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    Little brother of KOOLAID,
    WOW, You sound like you have far more intelligence that your older brother. Just wondering if perhaps brain power was at a premium earlier in your family’s development or maybe he was dropped on his head ?
    FYI- By contributing labor only to a Habitat Humanity project, who care what a director makes.

    • Koolaid's little brother December 20, 2014 at 8:28 pm

      My older bother ate a lot of paint chips as a child.

  • Stacey Maziarz December 20, 2014 at 3:01 pm

    Our overhead is typical of most non profits, generally between 25-30% of our affiliate. Almost all of our overhead and the cost of building is fueled by sales of donated goods from our restore. We currently have 7 employees only two of which are administrative and 4 who are full time. You should also know that we dedicated 3 houses this year and Patty’s was our 21st. Please feel free to get in touch with me if you have any further questions.

    Stacey Maziarz
    Executive Director
    Habitat for Humqnity

    • ICALLRaiseYa December 20, 2014 at 6:52 pm

      What does overhead ‘typical of most non profits’ mean?
      How does that compare with the Salvation Army overhead figure?

    • Joe Smith December 20, 2014 at 7:04 pm

      That re-store is an interesting thing. Every time I have gone there I’ve noticed polygamists milling around the place and wondered if they were the ones running it. So what is the connection with the polygamists and the Re-Store?

      • Stacey Maziarz December 22, 2014 at 10:00 am

        Dear Joe,

        We do not discriminate. Anyone who wants to shop in the restore can. The Restore is not connected with any religious group .. it is part of our Non-Profit and run by Habitat for Humanity.

        Stacey Maziarz
        Executive Director
        Habitat for Humanity of Southwest Utah

    • Defender December 20, 2014 at 9:25 pm

      Nice job Stacey; thanks for all of the clarification and the good work you are doing. Many of us who donate and see the great work that comes from those donations are very appreciative.

  • S. Carter December 20, 2014 at 5:56 pm

    Keep up the good work Stacey!!

  • A. Judd December 21, 2014 at 6:50 am

    That is so awesome! Don’t fret over frivolous negativity. I know a family who was able to get into a habitat home and it has been a major blessing. I hope that this kind of work keeps getting done.

  • Gill Johnston December 22, 2014 at 12:26 am

    nice job on the video. I’m excited to see this small news portal doing video in the stories now. I’ve been enjoying the other little adventure videos but now I am seeing more and more videos on the normal stories. Good job st. george news. keep up the good work.

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