Wells Fargo associates raise wall of Habitat home in Spartanburg

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A broad smile crept across Tekesha Baker’s face as Habitat for Humanity of Spartanburg volunteers lifted one of the walls of her new home into place Tuesday.

The working mother of two moved to the city a few months ago from Tallahassee, Fla. She hopes the house at 207 Bon Air Ave. will give her a safe, stable place to raise her son, Jacqurius, 14, and daughter, Tyreyonna, 12.

“We are very excited,” Baker said. “It’s a good feeling. I just want to say thank you to everyone. Words can’t really express how much this means to us.”

The home will be the 12th house built by Habitat Spartanburg in the community across from Spartanburg Medical Center since the nonprofit faith-based organization began focusing on the area three years ago.

San Francisco-based Wells Fargo provided $70,000 for the Baker’s home and associates from the bank’s branches in Spartanburg will give some of their time to help complete the project.

Wells Fargo has supported Habitat Spartanburg in the past, including the gift of a foreclosed home near the city’s South Converse neighborhood in March 2013 that the organization renovated for another local mother and her two children.

But this is the first build solely sponsored by Wells Fargo in Spartanburg.

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“It’s always wonderful experience to be [on site] the day construction begins,” said Camille Bethea, board member of Habitat Spartanburg. “Our goal is to provide hardworking, well-deserving families access to decent housing. We’d like to express our thanks to Wells Fargo for their support.”

Bethea said Habitat began work in the “Spartanburg Regional community” in 2013.

The organization first acquired nine lots that included dilapidated and condemned homes.

It has since added three more lots to its portfolio, including a property across from the Baker’s home that will support a build later this month sponsored by Spartanburg-based Denny’s Corp.

Ethan Burroughs, Spartanburg market president for Wells Fargo, said the bank has gave more than $281 million to charities across the country last year, including $3.8 million to nonprofits in South Carolina.

“Well Fargo has been a longtime partner of Habitat,” said Ethan Burroughs, Spartanburg market president for Wells Fargo. “I love to see the finished home, but this is also very special … We want to help our customers succeed financially.”

Jacqurius will start school at Spartanburg High this year. His sister will attend McCracken Middle School. They said they are excited to move into their new home.

“It will be a pretty great Christmas if we are [in the home] by then,” Tekesha said.

Since its inception in 1987, Habitat Spartanburg has provided homes for 115 families in the county.

For more information, visit www.habitatspartanburg.com.

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