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Habitat sets its sights on the mountain – Roan Mountain

NEEDED: Volunteers to help Habitat for Humanity build a home for a Roan Mountain couple.
Christopher Holtsclaw and his partner Lucretia Beattie are working with Habitat for Humanity to get a new home. Holtsclaw said they have been working with the organization for about a year. What they need now to make their dream of a new home a reality is volunteers to help with the construction.
Holtsclaw said when he initially approached Habitat for Humanity about a new home he was “told ‘no’ on building in Roan Mountain” because of a lack of volunteers to complete the construction.
“This new director Art Pierce came in and he is willing to work with us if we can get people to help,” Holtsclaw said. “He said he would give us a few weeks to see if we can get some volunteers.”
Holtsclaw said he was told Habitat volunteers from Sullivan and Washington Counties may not be able to travel to Roan Mountain for the project, and that was the reason behind needing volunteers from Carter County.
“We don’t need money, we just need people to volunteer labor,” Holtsclaw said.
The mobile home which Holtsclaw and Beattie are currently living in is approximately 40 years old, according to Holtsclaw. He said the floors are giving way, and last year he was told there was black mold in the home.
A Roan Mountain native, Holtsclaw sand Beattie live in the Sugar Hollow community. He said he lived away from Roan Mountain for a time, but moved back in order to help care for his aging parents. He lives close to them now and wants to remain in the Roan Mountain community, but he is not sure if he will be able to if the Habitat build does not come through.
Holtsclaw said he and Beattie also face their own health issues and both of them are disabled.
The couple has already qualified for a home build through Habitat and have already completed more than 360 of their 500 “sweat equity” volunteer hours which the program requires, Holtsclaw said. The project is on hold right now waiting to get the volunteers.
Pierce, the Habitat for Humanity official, noted that, “This is the first house we have built in that area.” He added that there is currently no timetable for the project because of the volunteer issue.
Anyone interested in volunteering to help Habitat for Humanity’s local branch build a home for Holtsclaw and Beattie can contact Holston Habitat for Humanity by telephone at 423-239-7689 or through their website at www.holstonhabitat.org and let them know you want to help with the Holtsclaw and Beattie project.