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Women work on Habitat house

Kathy Heicher
Vail, CO Colorado
Pam Boyd/EnterpriseMichelle Keane of Edwards shows off her skills with a drill on a Habitat for Humanity home being built by a team of women in Eagle.
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EAGLE ” The construction site was filled with the sounds of hammers, drills ” and feminine laughter.

Some 30 ladies turned out earlier this month to participate in a “Women Build” week at the Habitat for Humanity triplex that is under construction at the Bluffs subdivision in Eagle.

“We are just a bunch of girls who volunteer to get together and drill,” said Michelle Keane of Edwards.

Mary Ann Metternick is part of a group of women who regularly volunteer with Vail Resorts guest services. The women read about the Habitat project and decided to come down and volunteer.

“I’m learning a lot. I’ve always wanted to do this,” said Metternick.

The women weren’t restricted to light work. Under the guidance of electrician Scott Archuleta of Arch Electric, and Habitat Project Manager Don McBee, they were pulling electrical wire, installing the pans for light fixtures, and running water pipes.

“This has been such a positive program for us ” we’re getting new people out, and they’re interested in coming back,” said Habitat Development Director Elyse Howard.

Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit organization that helps lower-income residents build and buy homes.

Howard said “Women Build” weeks are scheduled monthly throughout the summer. It’s a popular program, and the slots tend to fill up fast.

The local Habitat organization is working its way up to a home that would be completely financed and constructed by women. That project will likely be located in the Fox Hollow complex at Edwards.

Habitat’s promotional material for the project noted that Women Build is not about excluding men ” it is about including women.

“We use power tools,” said Ruth Powers, a retired lawyer from Edwards who volunteered with a group of women from the Alpine Club at Arrowhead. The women have done some framing, and helped to put in support beams.

“It’s a blast,” she said.

The women tend to organize their friends and sign up for work together, Howard said.

Carole Colletti said she and her grandchildren volunteered last summer with Habitat and she enjoyed it so much, she came back. She said volunteering with Habitat is a great way to give back to the community.

Habitat is working on a complex of seven homes in the Bluffs. One duplex is completed.

“We are all going to build our own cabins after this,” said Colletti.


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