The Kauffman Family

Shannon Kaufman and her son Caleb moved to Asheville from Florida for a fresh start. They immediately fell in love with the area and although she found employment, she had difficulty finding affordable housing.

As a social worker with DSS, Shannon was paying more than a third of her income for a safe place to live. Now, thanks to proceeds from the 2011 Xmas Jam, Shannon owns her own home and her mortgage payment is lower than what her rent had been.

Like all Habitat homeowners, Shannon contributed 200 hours of her own sweat equity – helping to build her house and the homes of her neighbors. She also took homeownership education courses, like Manage Your Money and Basic Home Repairs.

"We used to live in a 3rd floor apartment, so my son couldn’t play outside by himself. Now he is always outside playing with neighbors and friends and just enjoying being a little boy. We are so grateful for Warren and Stefani’s generosity and their commitment to Habitat. They have changed our lives forever," noted Shannon.

To see a short video of Warren talking about the Xmas Jam and Habitat for Humanity, click here. To see photos from Shannon’s key passing, please click here.

The lack of affordable housing is a huge issue in Asheville and the Mountain Xpress devoted several issues to the topic recently. Shannon was one of many voices and we encourage you to read her essay.

Shannon now works for the Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity, helping those in a similar situation to herself. Read her story here.