Habitat for Humanity helps Phoenix family celebrate first Christmas in own home

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A Phoenix family will be celebrating their first Christmas in their own home thanks to Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona. (Source: Habitat for Humanity) A Phoenix family will be celebrating their first Christmas in their own home thanks to Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona. (Source: Habitat for Humanity)
Carina Gutierrez and her four children used to live in a one bedroom and one bathroom apartment, now they are in a three bedroom, single-family home after Gutierrez applied to Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona. (Source: Habitat for Humanity) Carina Gutierrez and her four children used to live in a one bedroom and one bathroom apartment, now they are in a three bedroom, single-family home after Gutierrez applied to Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona. (Source: Habitat for Humanity)
Gutierrez, who is originally from Mexico, was recommended to contact Habitat for Humanity by her pastor after her and her family struggled with excessive overcrowding in their previous living conditions. (Source: Habitat for Humanity) Gutierrez, who is originally from Mexico, was recommended to contact Habitat for Humanity by her pastor after her and her family struggled with excessive overcrowding in their previous living conditions. (Source: Habitat for Humanity)
For the last two decades, Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona has hosted an annual fundraiser, "Blueprints & Blue Jeans," to raise money to help build homes for those in need. (Source: Habitat for Humanity) For the last two decades, Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona has hosted an annual fundraiser, "Blueprints & Blue Jeans," to raise money to help build homes for those in need. (Source: Habitat for Humanity)
The fundraiser has helped Habitat to build more than 1,100 affordable homes in the Valley and make improvements to existing homes. Habitat homeowners build the homes alongside volunteers and pay a mortgage they can manage. (Source: Habitat for Humanity) The fundraiser has helped Habitat to build more than 1,100 affordable homes in the Valley and make improvements to existing homes. Habitat homeowners build the homes alongside volunteers and pay a mortgage they can manage. (Source: Habitat for Humanity)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

A Phoenix family will be celebrating their first Christmas in their own home thanks to Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona.

Carina Gutierrez and her four children used to live in a one bedroom and one bathroom apartment, now they are in a three bedroom, single-family home after Gutierrez applied to Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona.

Gutierrez, who is originally from Mexico, was recommended to contact Habitat for Humanity by her pastor after her and her family struggled with excessive overcrowding in their previous living conditions.

"Thank you and God bless you all for your help and making my dream come true," Gutierrez said to Habitat organizers and volunteers.

For the last two decades, Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona has hosted an annual fundraiser, "Blueprints & Blue Jeans," to raise money to help build homes for those in need.

The fundraiser has helped Habitat for Humanity to build more than 1,100 affordable homes in the Valley and make improvements to existing homes. Habitat homeowners build the homes alongside volunteers and pay a mortgage they can manage.

"We know that a home means better health, a better opportunity for kids, a place to study and a place to be safe," said Liz Pabst-Wanless, director of central development for Habitat for Humanity. "It's something most of us take for granted and it's really hard to describe, but for the families who are living in a cramped one-bedroom apartment, having personal space allows individuals to breathe, think better and improve him or herself."

The two-day fundraising event will be held at DC Ranch in North Scottsdale. It will include a wall-raising activity, entertainment, food and live auctions at the DC Ranch Community Center. The walls built by volunteers will be the shell of a home for a Valley family.

Habitat organizers emphasize that volunteers do not have to have construction experience to join the effort. One of the unique traditions for volunteers and homeowners is to write messages on the 2' x 4' boards that frame the house.

"There's a moment after the walls go up that marks the beginning of the house. Individuals write a blessing or a prayer, well-wishes or a lucky saying that gets baked into the home," said Habitat Director of Marketing and Communication Dusty Parsons. "During the wall raining, it's an outpouring of goodwill. That's how we observe the beginning of each build, the dedication of the home."

Habitat for Humanity hopes to raise $100,000 at the 2018 Blueprints and Blue Jeans event at DC Ranch.

For more information on tickets or volunteering, visit habitatcaz.org.

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