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Habitat celebrates 50th home

The person who makes some of the best cheeseburgers in Farmville is now the proud owner of a new home on Hylawn Avenue thanks to Piedmont Habitat for Humanity, volunteers and donors.

Rosa Chambers and her daughter Tanya took possession of the keys to the two bedroom, two bath house Saturday, July 24, at a ceremony thanking volunteers, donors and all who had a part in constructing Habitat’s 50th home during the organization’s 30th year of service to the area.

The two were grateful for the efforts of Habitat for Humanity and the 700 hours of volunteer work that made it possible for Rosa and Tanya Chambers to have an affordable mortgage and a place to call their own. The two are currently renting an apartment in town.

“Thank you. Thank you a lot,” Rosa Chambers said to all who made the red-roofed home with lots of curb appeal possible.

Tanya Chambers, a senior at Prince Edward High School, said the house represents a new beginning for her and her mother.

The two put in more than 200 hours of what Habitat terms “sweat equity” themselves working to put in flooring, painting and digging holes for the porch foundation.

Rosa Chambers is the main cook at JW’s Express Exxon on East Third Street in Farmville, long known for its famous cheeseburgers. Chambers has worked there for 20 years.

“I’m so tickled for Rosa,” Jean Williams, the owner of JW’s said while standing on the porch of the new home.

Tammie Hackney, a co-worker with Chambers, said the home could not have gone to a more deserving person.

“She’s a good person. She really is,” Hackney said of Chambers. “She likes to joke a lot. I can’t say nothing bad about my girl. I love her to death. I have been friends with her for 18 years.”

Sam Rabon, the director of resource development and marketing for Piedmont Habitat for Humanity, said what began as a partnership between Habitat and Rosa and Tanya Chambers has grown to something much more.

“We never say we build a house for someone, we build it with them, “ Rabon told the crowd gathered in front of the newly landscaped home at the beginning of the ceremony. “That has never been more true than with these two. We’re so grateful for this partnership that has become a family.”

Dan Dwyer’s responsibility with Habitat is to help identify potential partner families. Dwyer said in their first meeting about the potential partnership, Rosa Chambers made her requirements for the new home very clear.

“The first words out of her mouth were, ‘I want two bathrooms,’” Dwyer told those gathered. “What are you going to say to a lady with a metal spatula in her hand.”