It is a warm November day as I pull onto the sandy drive packed with cars. The jobsite buzzes with volunteers in hard hats. Today the trusses are going up and the team is shouting, hoisting, hammering—a cacophony of coordination. The mood is nothing short of festive.
Sea Island Habitat for Humanity (HFH) was established in 1978, the third oldest chapter of the now global nonprofit housing organization. Over the last forty-two years, Sea Island HFH has built over three hundred and fifty houses in the region, primarily on Johns Island but also on James Island, Wadmalaw Island, and even south to Hollywood and Ravenel. Today, the team is working on a four bedroom, two bath home off of Highway 162 on Johns Island. In a few short months, a family of five will move into their new home.
Housing in the greater Charleston area isn’t cheap, especially of late. According to John Rhoden, Sea Island HFH’s executive director, you can buy two houses in Sumter, South Carolina, for the price of one house on Johns Island. “People are driving in from Ravenel because there is no significant source of affordable housing on Johns Island or even James Island.