A group of Cal State Fullerton students sacrificed their Saturday, showing up at 7:30 a.m. to build seven houses in Cypress in conjunction with the Orange County Chapter of Habitat for Humanity.
CSUF student John Lewis, 28, volunteered for the event and said he would like to be a part of future projects. He said he enjoys working with Habitat for Humanity because the group has taught him how to use an assortment of tools.
“The coolest thing about this is the learning,” Lewis said.
Scott Bainbridge, of Newport Beach, is a senior crew leader for Habitat for Humanity. He is considered a “green team” member, which is a person who commits to at least one Saturday a month and leads a group of volunteers to complete an assignment.
Bainbridge said Habitat for Humanity is funded by individual corporate funding, not government funding. A sponsoring company, such as Option 1 or Warehouser that funded the Cypress project, pays for all the necessary materials to build the house.
The projects rely on volunteers who don’t necessarily have experience in construction.
“A lot of times when the new volunteers come out here, they come out here and say . ‘I really can’t do anything.’ By the time they go home they say . ‘I really did something today that I didn’t think I could do,’ ” Bainbridge said.
Habitat for Humanity not only gives to those in need but also it teaches individuals and serves as a source of pride, said Irvine resident Kathy Bashore.
Bashore, who moved to California two years ago, is the chairwoman of the Hospitality Committee for Habitat for Humanity.
“This is the first time that I’ve been somewhere where they actually have active builds ongoing,” she said.
Communications major Karoll Cabrera also volunteered for the Cypress build. She worked with future homeowner Rafael Uribe. Uribe said his wife and four children were anxious and excited about their new home.
The CSUF chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America, comprised of public relations students and PRSSA’s Bateman National Case Study team, organized the event as part of the association’s annual competition that encourages students to use their public relations skills and help a nonprofit organization in the process.
Physically working with Habitat for Humanity is different than working on the public relations side of the organization, CSUF student Joannah Barela said.
“When you put out words, you don’t always see the impression that you make, but nails and wood . you see something,” Barela said.