Habitat for Humanity begins unity build in East Austin

City leaders and civic organizations rolled up their sleeves and raised a wall on a new home in East Austin Saturday morning.

An overwhelming feeling soon-to-be homeowner Mary Miranda said she has always dreamed of.

Housing affordability in Austin is scarce.

"I'm born and raised in Austin so is my mom, we didn't want to move out of Austin but it was getting harder and harder and harder to find affordable housing," Miranda said. "My parents have never even owned a home of their own, they always put a roof over our head, they were never homeless."

Habitat for Humanity began construction on multiple homes in Austin and San Marcos. Billy Whipple, VP of Construction, said the build is about unity and helping families afford a home.

"Housing is a critical part of a community and when it's not affordable you see different parts of your community go away so what we want to do is make sure folks have an opportunity to buy a house," said Whipple. "It's a great partnership it's a great hand up to some folks so when we build with the owners they really get to see all the sweat that gets built into the house and they get to see how everything goes together."

Volunteers came from near and far. Some are neighbors, AmeriCorps members and UT Austin students, many rolling up their sleeves and learning on the job.

West Worthington wasn't part of an organization. He said he just wanted to lend a hand. The favorite part for many longtime volunteers is seeing the look on the homeowner's faces when the houses are finally done.

 "We were building a new house and there was a gentleman who had just had his house built, and so he came back immediately and wanted to give back," Worthington said.

Miranda's house will have four bedrooms and is also ADA-accessible, a place her kids and her parents will be able to call home by Christmas

"Knowing that we are actually going to have a front porch, we are going to have a backyard this is stuff that I only dreamed about," Miranda said. "Being able to give my family something like this, it's been hard but I am right here right now so I am grateful."

For volunteer or donation info go to their website.