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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Women are helping build four new homes on Kansas City’s east side, which had been postponed during the last year because of the pandemic.

Habitat KC’s Women Build Initiative is based in the area near 26th Street and Olive Avenue.

Volunteers work at least one day to help families build strength, stability and self reliance by creating homes.

This is also a way to highlight the homeownership challenges faced by many single women who are leaders of their families.

Volunteers get the chance to learn skills that make them feel more independent and help build a community where more people have safe, decent places to live.

“My husband was a carpenter,” Brenda Bales, one of the volunteers, said. “We would have been married 40 years this year, and he passed away in January. We had a battle with cancer for the last year and in an already ‘sucko’ 2020, and after he passed away, I got an email about the Women Build and I’m like: ‘I want to do that. I want to do that. I want to do that for him.’ And for me. It’s part of my recovery to get out and do stuff.”

The need for affordable housing has never been greater, as an overheated housing market has sent prices skyrocketing for the few homes available for sale.

Six out of ten people living in poverty are women, and women with children are more likely to be affected by poor living conditions.