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One Home, Many Hearts

UCM, the Warrensburg School District and
Habitat for Humanity join forces to create a home
for a Johnson County family.

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By Jeff Murphy

German author and poet Christian Morganstern once wrote, "A house is made of walls and beams; a home is built with love and dreams." If you could look within the walls of a new house being built for Josh Franklin, Dawn Ybarra and their six children, you may get a glimpse of what it means, not only for a family to have a place they can call home, but how a community has come together to share a part of their dream.

Tucked away from view will be the two-by-fours signed by those who contributed to the Bucks for Boards fundraiser and the countless screws, nails and building materials purchased or placed by the volunteers who now have a connection to this family and their new home. When the project is completed, the Franklin-Ybarra family, which includes three boys, ages 14, 12, and 10, and three girls, ages 8, 6 and 5, will move into their new home at 628 W. Gay St. in Warrensburg.

In a project dubbed "Building Community Through Education," Johnson County Habitat for Humanity, the University of Central Missouri, and the Warrensburg R-VI School District have come together to make this construction effort possible. It is the eighth Habitat home built in Johnson County, but the first time so many different groups and individuals in the community have worked side-by-side on a Habitat for Humanity project.

"This is a two-year initiative that began in fall 2011 with the idea that the first year would be fundraising, and this year will be focused on building. Our plan is to have a dedication for the house prior to UCM's spring 2013 graduation ceremony," said Shari Bax, university vice president for student experience and engagement.

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