Habitat for Humanity helps make Kumuhau home for six Native Hawaiian families

Habitat for Humanity helps make Kumuhau home for six Native Hawaiian families
Christopher Joseph
Christopher Joseph

WAIMANALO, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Six Native Hawaiian families received the keys to homes they helped build in Waimanalo.

After a year of work and decades of waiting for some, Kumuhau is now home sweet home.

One year after they stood there to break ground, they came together to celebrate the completion of their community.

Today was move in day. The Joseph ohana was full of pride giving tours of their brand new 3 bedroom house.

They built it from the ground up with Habitat for Humanity Volunteers and building materials.

TJ Joseph says, "I'm just so proud and honored and I can't help thinking of my grandparents and my kupuna and how hard they worked to build their homes back in the day."

It's something her husband Levi's dad Christopher Joseph did not live to see. He put his name on the Hawaiian Homelands waiting list in the 1970s.

"If it wasn't for him and that lease, we wouldn't be here" explains his grateful daughter in law.

TJ & Levi spent two days a week working on their dream home over the past year, teaching their kids valuable lessons along the way.

"We asked them if the foundation is the most important, what are our family values? So we wrote them all on slips of paper and put them all in our foundation" says the mother of four.

Those values were shared with guests on chocolates today. The family has more sweet surprises in store to make this a true home for the holidays.

TJ told us, "Christmas Eve my husband is going to transform this whole house into their home and tell them we have to come home because Santa is coming I think that moment is going to be priceless. Santa is great, but Mom and Dad gave them a home for Christmas."

The kids are already making themselves right at home. Their 6-year-old son Kruz wants to decorate the boys' bedroom with a shark theme.

Getting ready for Christmas in one week will be a breeze compared to what they've done in the last year.

They're grateful for the opportunity to raise their kids in their own home.

There are 27,000 applicants on the waitlist that's more than 450 pages long.

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