For the second consecutive year, The Episcopal School of Dallas has sponsored a house as part of its continued partnership with Habitat for Humanity. Construction started in January, and over the last four months, members from all corners of the ESD community came out to help complete the home for the Woldemariam and Teckle Family. After months of planning, manual labor, and teamwork, the home was dedicated to the family of three in a special ceremony held on Saturday, April 11.
Several members of the ESD community were in attendance, including faculty and staff members and students, alumni, and parents. The ceremony was officiated by The Reverend Amy Heller, ESD’s senior chaplain.
At Saturday’s dedication ceremony, several gifts were presented to the family, including a toolkit, a Bible, and a set of house keys. A loaf of bread and bottle of wine were also given to the family to symbolize the “many happy meals to be shared together in the home,” and “to celebrate the joy in [their] lives.”
Service to others is one of ESD’s Founding Tenets, and has led to several local, national, and international partnerships with charitable organizations. The School’s partnership with Habitat for Humanity started eight years ago when Middle School students built flower boxes at Wolf Run. Primer students then gathered in the Quarry and filled the hand-made boxes with colorful flowers to present to new Habitat for Humanity homeowners. That tradition continues today in conjunction with the build.
Lower, Middle, and Upper School students not old enough to assist in the building process still found ways to get involved. Scout troops collected supplies for and distributed snack packs to volunteers during the Saturday shifts; other groups set up water stations and lemonade stands to ensure everyone stayed hydrated. Divisions also collected household items and cleaning supplies for the family.
“Working on the house is an especially rewarding experience because you get to see the immediate results and work alongside other members of the ESD community,” Laura Gomez, ESD’s Habitat for Humanity coordinator said. “We are so thankful to all the families and organizations who helped sponsor and build the home. It is really a special way to bring together different community groups and organizations.”
Construction on the house started in January with the ESD Booster Club, Dads’ Partnership, ESD Board of Directors, Alumni Association, Parents’ Association, Young Men’s Service League, and Upper School faculty and staff supplying volunteers for designated build days. Students and the rest of the community were also encouraged to spend their free Saturdays trussing, decking, roofing, and siding the home. The final weekends were spent painting the exterior and planting flowers in the front yard to prepare the house for the dedication.
To see photos from Saturday's dedication, please click here.