Mohamud-Hassan Family

Abdluahi Mohamud - Faduma Hassan 3

Hello to everyone. I would like to introduce my family. My name is Abdulahi, my wife’s name is Faduma, and we have four kids: Abdirahmaan, Ali, Mohamed and Yusuf.

First and for most I want to thank Habitat for Humanity of Dane County, the staff and the volunteers. We are excited to be working with Habitat for Humanity of Dane County to build a home for our family.

Owning a home is a dream come true. Home is a secure place for the children to play, and a safe backyard. We always wanted to own a home, because home is the best place to raise a family.

Again we would like to thank Habitat for Humanity of Dane County, the staff, the sponsors, and the volunteers, for giving us the opportunity to own a home.


Kerboua Family


First, I would like to thank Habitat for Humanity for helping us achieve our dream of owning a house. In 2006, we came from Algeria to the United States, which for us was a great adventure. We did not know much about the United States by virtue of the distance from Algeria.

My family includes myself, my wife and our son. When we came to the U.S. it was very hard time for us in terms of the language and for finding a job. I began to study English and look for a job. It was not easy to find a job. I did rent a one-bedroom apartment for my family. After three months, I got a temporary job with a low salary and the big problem that we faced is a lack of health insurance.

In 2008, our second son was born. I got a better job and we then rented a two-bedroom apartment. In 2009, I got a permanent job with a good salary and health insurance for our whole family.

In 2010, our third son was born and recently my wife gave birth to a baby girl. We have stayed in the same apartment until now.

Our dream is to provide a better life for our children, to study, make friends and to meet our neighbors. My oldest son always asks why he cannot host his friends at our apartment. My son also has a big dream. He hopes to have his own room. A house will help us achieve our hope.

Thank you, thank you Habitat for Humanity of Dane County for making our dream come true.

Farid and Salima Kerboua Family

Ragab-El Abassi Family

Abdallah - Khadija (2)In 2000, I came to the United States looking for better life. I was a single man. In 2011, I married a wonderful woman. We now have a child. From this moment, I was looking for the best place to live with my family. I heard about Habitat for Humanity of Dane County program. I applied and was pleased to be accepted into the program. I am so happy.

Now I work hard and take classes. Thank you to the staff and volunteers who are giving me the tools to learn how to be a homeowner.



Lepage Family


My name is Sam.  I grew up just outside of Madison and have always lived in the Madison area.  I am the second oldest of eleven children, and my experience taking care of my siblings motivated me to earn my teaching degree from UW-Madison.  I worked in after-school programs and at a daycare to put myself through school, and stayed in the childcare profession after graduating.

I have two beautiful children:  Eurijah and Joslyn.  They are my everything and keep me on my toes every day.  Eurijah is a curious and inquisitive five year old.  He loves sports, science, and learning about the world.  His favorite things to do with our family are go to the lake, read, and have movie nights. Joslyn loves being wherever Eurijah is.  She enjoys reading, art, and music.  She has already developed her own sense of style at the age of two, which includes pairing slippers and sandals.

Since becoming a single mom we have bounced between my parent’s home, our own apartment, and back to my parents.  After initially moving to my parents, I soon realized that I wanted our own space, where we could develop our own family routines and sense of normalcy.  We soon moved into our own two bedroom apartment.  With my single income, we could not afford to live in the nicest area.  It was a normal occurrence to hear yelling and fighting and to see police on the street.  This was not the type of life that I wanted my children to grow up around.

However, based on my income, there was no way I would be able to afford housing in a nicer area.  Eurijah would repeatedly ask why we didn’t have our own house like Granny Lu and Papa and why we had to live with other people.  We are so blessed to have heard about Habitat for Humanity from a co-worker.  Without them it would have been many years before I was able to make moving into our own home a reality.  To have a stable place for my children to call their own that they can come back to.  To be able to let my kids be kids, which can sometimes be loud.  We are excited to be able to have family get-togethers at our home, to have a yard to play in, and for Eurijah and Joslyn to have their own rooms that they can paint.  Thanks to Habitat, my kids will have a place to call their own and will be able to be part of a neighborhood and community.

Vang Family

Bee Vang 2 (2)Hi, my name is Bee Vang. There are 5 people in my family, including my 4 children. Lue Lee is my first child. He has already finished high school. My second child is Ze Lee, who is a 12th grader. The third child is Long Lee, who is an 11th grader. The forth is Wa Lee, a 10th grader.

The reason I came to the USA was because of my parent’s involvement and support with the United States during the Vietnam War. After the Americans pulled out of Laos in 1975, the Laotian and Vietnamese soldiers came looking for Hmong soldiers who had supported the US. Because of my parent’s involvement and support with the United States, it was no longer safe for us to stay in Laos. We ran to Thailand to seek refuge, but we were also unwelcomed there. Ultimately, we tried our best to survive in Thailand day-by-day.

In 2003 and 2004, the United Nations finally came and allowed the Hmong Veterans and their families to come to the United States. I was finally able to take my children and come the United States. In 2004, we decided to come to Wisconsin.

By Bee Vang

Benani-Laaziz Family

HassanBenani and MaryamLaaziz2 (300x210)I moved to the United States in 1998 right after high school. My family of five lived in a $35/month one bedroom apartment; the mold should have paid half of the rent. The apartment was dark since it only had two small windows. I won an immigration lottery that USCIS has every year. That year, I was one of 3,000 recipients of the immigration visa.

I moved to New York, where I lived for over three years, trying to better my family’s life. In New York, we were able to move to a better apartment with large two bedrooms for around $150/month. It still did not provide enough room for all us, but it was well lit and a lot healthier.

In 2001, I came to visit a friend and fell in love with Madison – it was spring time and I didn’t know the winters were this brutal. I decided to move here.

On Jan. 22, 2009, I suffered a heart attack. I was a week into my new insurance policy. My claims were declined due to a pre-existing condition. I ended up with a $60,000 health bill which led to me filing for bankruptcy. Right then I thought I never would be able to own a house. I felt that way until I attended a Habitat for Humanity meeting.
I met my wife in October 2009 after a visit to the home land. A year later she came to the United States. In less than a year, we were blessed with Salma (August 2011) and Rayan (September 2013).
Hope is what Habitat for Humanity gave us. To have a place that we can call home has been a dream for generations in our families. Thanks to God and Habitat for Humanity, that dream is becoming a reality.

We truly appreciate the work that everyone in Habitat for Humanity and all its volunteers do to better people lives, to better communities and to give our children a better future.

Sincerely yours,  Hassan & Maryam

Woodring Family

Lauren Woodring - Preferred PhotoMy name is Lauren Woodring. I was practically born and raised in Madison. Aside from some moving around in my pre-teen and teen years, I have always called Dane County my home. I have two young boys, Cameron and Ethan. They are the light of my life, and truly my purpose, and the reason I persevered and continued to push through some of the hard years of my life. Everything I do is for them, to follow my calling and to give them a hope and a future!

I was raised in a middle class home with every opportunity for greatness. But, as many do, I took all of the luxuries I was provided for granted and ended up making choices that ultimately lead to many years of struggling. At a young age I was a far beyond my years mentally, and no one’s advice or intervention attempts would hinder me from taking the road I ultimately wanted to travel.

When I was 25 years old, I found out that I was pregnant with my oldest son Cameron and it was the happiest day, ever! Little did I know that this single event would have a domino effect that would change my entire life! Leading up to this time, the lifestyle that I was choosing was toxic to not only me, but those around me. All of a sudden I realized that there is more at stake than just my own selfish wants and needs. I was about to bring a handsome, bright, lively, smart caring and kind young man into this world, and I did not want him to choose the same path that I had so foolishly chosen, or suffer at my expense. While attending a friend’s baby shower in 2012, I met my son’s Godmother and the rest is history! I developed a relationship with The Lord Jesus, started attending church, and growing in my faith!

Today, three years later, I have been blessed with an amazing job with The State of Wisconsin. I am a passionate member of my church, R Church, located on the west side of Madison. I serve on the host team as well as in media. I enjoy volunteering with The Pregnancy Helpline of Dane County as well as the various activities my children enjoy in our community. In September 2014, I gave birth to my second beautiful son, Ethan. He is such a happy, funny, smiling ray of a sunshine baby, and as a single mother I want to be able to give my boys a stable home environment that I was given growing up.

Owning a home to me is more than just four walls. It is safety and security. It is memories and laughter, discussions around the dinner table and the place you always return to. Home is where the heart is, and I am so incredibly thankful that I was accepted into the Habitat for Humanity program. It was truly a gift from God, and the more I learn about the program, the more my heart desires to give back to this charitable organization. Watching videos of other families giving their testimony, and seeing them build their homes from the ground up brings tears to my eyes. I can hardly believe that this is becoming a reality for me and my boys, and I am over the top excited for what the future holds for us!

Habitat’s mission and purpose is truly benevolent and selfless. You are changing people’s lives and making a difference. From the bottom of my heart, thank you! We are so appreciative for all that you do for our family, and other families in Dane County, and around the world!

Orth Family

Vicki Orth FamilyI was born and raised in Viroqua, WI. I grew up on a dairy farm with my parents, one sister and one brother. My father is now retired and still lives in Viroqua. My mother is in heaven.

We moved to Madison in 2005. I am a single mother with two children – Alexa and Devon. I work at Copps in Monona. My children are both students at Badger Rock Middle School. We belong to St. Stephen’s Lutheran Church in Monona.

Alexa and I share a love of reading. Alexa also has a very passionate love for all animals. Alexa has always wanted a dog, but where we live now, we are not allowed to have one.

Devon enjoys video games and cars. He has a surprising knowledge of cars for someone his age. Devon also loves cats and would like to have one. But where we live now, we cannot have a cat.

I also enjoy cooking and baking. I enjoy going online and trying new recipes.

We received news of our acceptance a few days before Christmas. We were all overwhelmed with joy. Alexa called it a Christmas miracle. A home will mean the world to me. I’m so happy to now be able to give my children the opportunities that I otherwise would not be able to provide them if not for the generosity of Habitat for Humanity of Dane County. Thank you to the Habitat staff and volunteers who work so hard to help families dreams come true. Your hard work, selflessness and devotion to helping the families of this and other communities is amazing. We feel truly blessed and grateful to partner with Habitat for Humanity of Dane County.

Rachel Turner

Turner Family (640x426) (300x249)My name is Rachel, and I am a mother of a little boy named Cameron. He is the reason I applied to Habitat. Growing up as a child, I lived in three different states. I could never call one place my real home. To give my child that opportunity to have a home is great. I want to give him something that I didn’t have as a child. To be part of Habitat and the volunteers that will help me build a home for my family is an amazing blessing for us. This is a huge dream come true.

The day I received the call from the Family Services Director, I was at work. I was so excited that I had to take a break. I ran to my car and cried and screamed.

To include my son in this process, I come home and show him pictures or discuss with him what we went over in the meetings. I look forward to building new and better memories with my son in our new home, not to mention getting a basketball hoop so I can finally teach him that mom can really play basketball.

Cameron is a very little energetic little boy, he loves to play his Xbox, being outside and basketball. One of the things we enjoy doing together is going to the movies and walking outside. He is truly God’s blessing from above. He keeps me on my toes always.

As for me, I am a very hard working young lady.  I love learning new things and overcoming challenges. We are very lucky and thankful for this opportunity. I look forward to learning about the ins and outs of building our first home and getting to know the people involved in the building process.

Thank you Habitat for Humanity and all the volunteers for all your help. We look forward to getting to know each and every one of you and making you a part of our family.

P.S.  “I hope we have a beautiful, beautiful backyard so I can play basketball and soccer.” – Cameron