MERRILLVILLE | Support is building for a project to create a new home for a veteran's family.
About one-third of the funding needed for the $90,000 Veterans Build project has been generated, Dan Klein, executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Northwest Indiana, said during a fundraiser Friday morning in Merrillville.
Habitat for Humanity is collaborating with the Northwest Indiana Veterans Action Council on the project to construct a home for an active service member, veteran or spouse of a deceased veteran.
When the fundraiser ended, Centsible Heating and Air Conditioning, of Griffith, committed to donate the HVAC system for the house and handle the installation, Klein said.
Klein said he was "very surprised" by the donation, which has a value of at least $7,500.
Habitat for Humanity continues to seek a partner family for the new home, and the organization has received some applications, Klein said.
Once the family is selected, they would choose where the home will be constructed.
Lots for the home are available in Gary, Hammond, Lake Station, Miller, Merrillville and Cedar Lake, Klein said.
After the home is built, mortgage payments for the partner family would be about $500 each month, he said. The payment includes taxes and insurance.
The partner family selected would be required to commit 300 hours of sweat equity to the home or another Habitat project and attend financial classes.
The Veterans Build project was developed from an idea of Michael Sparber, chairman of the Northwest Indiana Veterans Action Council.
Sparber hopes there will be at least one Veterans Build Habitat home constructed annually.
During Friday's fundraiser, Indiana National Guard Maj. Gen. R. Martin Umbarger honored veterans from all branches of the military and discussed sacrifices they made for the country.
"You were willing to be knocked down and you got back up," Umbarger said.
In particular, Umbarger recognized WWII veterans who protected the world against tyranny and then helped create a strong economy in the United States.
Visit www.nwihabitat.org for information about the Veterans Build project and ways to contribute.