Staff, students and faculty at the University of Manitoba's Bannatyne Campus kicked off a special project this week.

In partnership with Habitat for Humanity, the group will spend ten days building a home in the University's staff parking lot near McDermot Avenue and Tecumseh Street.

U of M volunteers, alongside the Habitat construction staff, will build the house from ground up daily, from now until June 20th.

Once completed the home will be relocated to it's permanent site nearby and handed over to a family of three. Michelle, a 28-year-old single mom and her two kids, both under the age of 12, currently live in a rented row house. Their future home will allow the family to experience the pride of home ownership.

Studies show secure housing can have a positive impact on learning; an educated child is more likely to avoid disease, gain employment and will have more options in life. Dr. Brian Postl, Dean of Medicine; Dean & Vice-Provost (Health Sciences) says “We will be laying down the foundation for a safe and healthy home environment and putting into action the core principal of social accountability important to all of us in the health care professions. He adds this is the first joint project that will see the Colleges within the newly integrated faulty come together.
Through a generous contribution from the Tachane Foundation, a major financial contributor to the build, the Faculty is closer to its fundraising target. The foundation, set up by the Sutherland family in 2008, focuses its charitable giving on Canadian Aboriginals and youth development.
Another strong supporter is Dr. Jonathan Wong, a palliative care physician with the WRHA and an instructor in the College of Medicine. He has donated over $10,000 through the sales of his Chopin CD Keys to Home. He produced the 15-track disc specifically to raise funds for the build and is donating 100 per cent of the proceeds. Keys to Home can be purchased at the U of M Health Sciences bookstore, McNally Robinson or Quest Musique.