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Southwest Minnesota Habitat for Humanity president Bev McCarvel (left) reads scripture during the candle ceremony as home recipients Sheryl Steffler and daughters Emilie and Katie look on during dedication of the Habitat For Humanity home Saturday morning in Luverne. Brian Korthals/Daily Globe

Home at last

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LUVERNE — It was a heartfelt dedication ceremony on Saturday as Sheryl Staeffler’s new home was completed by Southwestern Minnesota Habitat for Humanity, along with friends, family and community members.

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After Staeffler’s husband died two years ago, the family needed to change residences.

“I didn’t want to apply, but my two daughters and other family members pushed me to fill out the application,” Staeffler said.

Staeffler applied in spring 2011, and by April 2012 Southwestern Minnesota Habitat for Humanity broke ground on the home. The land was donated by Marie Wiegel, who owned the Luverne’s first Habitat for Humanity home at 201 E Park Street. Staeffler’s home is built on land that Wiegel owned at the time of her death; she donated the land to enable a family to have a home.

“I think this home is not only something that the Staeffler family can be proud of, but the community of Luverne should be proud of as well,” said Pam Dobson, executive director for Southwestern Habitat for Humanity. “It takes a whole community to do a project like this, and we had support pour in from everywhere.”

Dobson estimated that a total of 4,800 hours were spent building the house, and an estimated 3,500 of those were strictly volunteer hours. In addition, 300 to 500 of the hours were sweat equity hours given by Staeffler and her immediate family.

“Through the last year, many people have developed relationships as they worked side by side,” Dobson said during the ceremony. “Many friends, family, neighbors and community members labored many hours to build this home, and businesses within our community labored and donated services to this build.”

Many church members gave monetary donations and signed 2- by 6- by 8-inch boards with Bible verses and blessings for the home. Children in the churches gave coins and signed the boards. The VBS students of American Reformed Church contributed close to $1,500 and signed their blessings.

“These boards now make up your windows and door frames,” Dobson said.

Staeffler was presented with a Bible during the ceremony to commemorate the help and support local churches gave to the family in the building process.

Staeffler will officially be closing on her new home today and be given the keys. She and her two daughters Emile and Katie Staeffler, will then move in.

“My son, Zach, who is currently going to college in Fargo, will be helping us move in as well,” Staeffler said. “It’s going to be quite a process.

“It’s such a relief to finally have this done,” she added. “We haven’t had a home to really call our own in almost six years, and it just feels really good.”

Staeffler offered a message of thanks and gratitude to everyone who helped in the building of her new home.

“I can’t say thank you enough to my family, friends, community members and the Habitat for Humanity board for making this possible,” she said.

For more information on Southwestern Minnesota Habitat for Humanity, visit www.swmnh4h.org.

Daily Globe Reporter Erin Trester may be reached at 376-7322.

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Erin Trester
Erin Trester is the crime and city reporter for the Daily Globe. She's a native of Lewiston, MN, but moved to Buffalo, NY to attend college and obtained her bachelor's degree in Communications. She started at the Western New York Catholic Newspaper as a reporter in Buffalo, but in October 2013 she returned to her home state to start with the Daily Globe. Most of her spare time is taken up by her 13-year-old thoroughbred named Faith, but some of her other hobbies include reading, fishing and spending time with friends and family. 
(507) 376-7322
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