City of Greensboro and Habitat for Humanity partner to create new homes in neighborhoods devastated by tornado

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- A new partnership between the City of Greensboro and Habitat for Humanity will help people still displaced after the April 2018 tornado.

"I try not to come here because it's kind of sad. Coming here and not being able to come in. Not being able to sit on the front porch," said Yolanda Harris, looking at her destroyed home.

The blue tarp stretching across her roof and the growing mold inside is a constant reminder.

"It's rough looking at it. We're lucky to be alive," Harris said. "We were in the house when it hit."

She hasn't been inside since the tornado ripped through her home a year and a half ago.

All of that will soon change.

"We're going to tear this home down. From the ground up we're going to be anew, right on their property, where they've been living for over 20 plus years," said Sharon Hightower, the District 1 councilwoman for the City of Greensboro.

She and David Koloseike, the president and CEO of Habitat for Humanity of Greater Greensboro, are behind this plan.

The City of Greensboro and Habitat for Humanity are partnering up to create new homes in the neighborhoods devastated by the tornado.

"It gives families and the community a sense of hope and a sense of importance that people do care how they're affected," Koloseike said. " We can do more together in the neighborhoods and help strengthen what's already here."

Here's how it will work:

The City of Greensboro and Habitat for Humanity have purchased several lots where houses used to stand.

New homes will be built in each lot and bring families, like the Harris family, back to their roots.

"They asked us why we want to stay here. My children grew up here," Harris said. "All three of my boys were born and raised in this house. So there's memories here. So we want to stay in this spot."

It's a community coming together to keep each other together.

"This is because we're going to do so much positive over here. We want people to come over here," Hightower said. "Move back to the area and be on the cusp of new things that are going to be happening."

The City of Greensboro is using money from housing bonds -- money specifically for east Greensboro -- and donated funds to help with this project.

Hightower says they have asked the state for $1.5 million to put towards housing in this community.

They're hoping once the state budget is passed, they'll be able to use some of those funds too.

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