Clay County Habitat for Humanity built 165 homes throughout the county. The majority of homes have been built in Green Cove Springs. Clay County Habitat has built 105 homes in Green Cove Springs, 46 in Middleburg, 12 in Orange Park, 1 in Penney Farms, and 1 in Keystone Heights. Our vision is to create a world where everyone has a decent place to live.
According to the 2017 Clay County Quality of Life Report produced by the Clay County Chamber of Commerce Foundation, residents have been experiencing a drastic increase in the cost to purchase a home from 2012-2017. The average cost to purchase a home in Clay County now exceeds $172,990. Other housing options include renting an apartment which has been increasingly expensive. According to the Low Income Housing Coalition’s Out of Reach 2018 report, a modest 2-bedroom apartment costs $1,118 in the state of Florida. This requires someone making minimum wage to work 104 hours a week to be able to afford their rent.
“In 1977, Clay County Habitat for Humanity was formed by members of the Penney Farms community. Churches in the area were our biggest supporters and continue to help us today. With donations from individual donors, foundations, and businesses, we’ve expanded our building capacity to complete between 5-8 homes annually,” said Carolyn Edwards, Executive Director. Our goal has been to construct safe and affordable homes. Throughout the years, the building style has changed from the school house style which was constructed off site and driven to the location to our current on-site construction. Home size depends on the needs of the future homeowners, but the most popular Habitat home size is a 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom.
Clay County Habitat is able to create affordable housing with the support of individual donors and mission partners like Jacksonville Jaguars, TIAA Bank, Vystar, Orange Park Medical Center, Clay Electric, Wells Fargo, Publix Super Market Charities, State Farm, Bank of America, Whirlpool and other community partners. Volunteers and groups have generously donated thousands of hours throughout the years in order to help construct homes. Volunteers have helped frame walls, install windows, paint, lay sod, hang blinds and much more. Alongside the volunteers, future home owners preform sweat equity hours at their homes. Cathy Davy, a Clay County Habitat Homeowner, says “it is a unique and wonderful experience learning how to install things like your dishwasher.”