A Place To Call Home

Quility volunteers

What has been designated for almost a year as “Women Build #18” will soon be called “home” to Asheville, North Carolina native, Melvin Allen, and his 10-year-old son.  

Quility is honored to have been a part of this meaningful partnership with Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity. Last summer, 32 woman-identifying corporate staff members travelled from six different states to help construct and financially support the construction of Melvin’s home (Buncombe County’s 18th Women Build project).  

About Melvin

Melvin works for The Christine W. Avery Learning Center Inc., a local nonprofit that provides academic, social, cultural, spiritual and civic development for disadvantaged families in Western North Carolina. Over the years, his living situation has become increasingly unsustainable—from neglectful landlords and impassable roads after winter storms to ever-rising rent prices that make homeownership feel close to impossible.

In Melvin’s application to Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity, he expressed not only his hope to provide his son with a permanent home but also to have a yard and enough space for him to play. 

We are thrilled to announce that as of April 28, 2023, Melvin will be the proud, deserving and grateful owner of a brand-new townhome in the New Heights neighborhood of West Asheville. His son will have his own bedroom, 1,672 square feet of house to call home, a yard and a safe neighborhood to grow and build community in.  

Quility, Habitat and homeowner come together

“We like to say that Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, community and hope,” says Zoe Trout, Development Officer of Individual and Corporate Giving for Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity. “There is a true partnership between the homeowners, volunteers and donors. Donations and ReStore revenues cover the costs of construction and volunteers help keep the construction costs low in order to keep homeowner mortgages affordable. The collaboration between so many people in our community is inspiring!”  

Now, with construction complete and keys almost in hand, Melvin feels he is setting an example for his son, creating a legacy, maintaining roots in the city they love and establishing the foundation for future success and generational wealth. 

“It is such an honor to be a part of Melvin’s homeownership journey,” says Whit Zeh, Senior Director of Corporate Well-Being and Community Outreach at Quility. “We’re grateful to have been a part of the process at different stages and in different ways—from providing financial support and bringing together women from our company to help with the actual build to hearing Melvin’s story and receiving an invitation to his closing . Witnessing such impactful moments feeds my soul. Our gratitude goes out to Habitat and our amazing Asheville community who helped Melvin and his son have something to call their own.”  

About Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity  

Founded in 1983, Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity (AAHH) was the first Habitat affiliate in North Carolina. Now serving Buncombe and Madison Counties, AAHH provides affordable homeownership and home repair programs to qualified low-income resident seeking to build a better future on the foundation of stable housing.

A decent place to call home and an affordable mortgage enables Habitat homeowners to save more, invest in education, pursue opportunities, and have greater financial stability. The home repair program preserves the character, affordability, and diversity of local neighborhoods and enables long-time residents to stay in their homes.

Learn more about Asheville Area Habitat and how you can get involved at ashevillehabitat.org. 

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Brook van der Linde
Contributing Writer and Content Specialist
Brook van der Linde is a contributing writer and content specialist for Quility. She provides lifestyle articles and insurance information via Quility’s online magazine. Her industry and leadership-focused content can be accessed via LinkedIn.