January 22, 2007
Director of Media Relations

AMHERST, Mass.—Members of the Amherst College football team are putting their shoulders into a different kind of workout this week: building a Habitat for Humanity home. The student athletes and their coaches will be spending their days, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., working at the Stanley Street site this week.

“These guys do lot of community service all year,” says E.J. Mills, the head football coach at Amherst. “Taylor Brown [’09, Boulder, Colo.,] has been working with Habitat and suggested that this might be a good job for the team.” The student athletes have returned early to campus to tackle the job, before spring semester classes begin next week.

Amherst College has provided the land for the construction of four new homes for low-income residents of the town of Amherst. Three acres of college land in Amherst were donated to the local chapter of the internationally active group that has brought capital, rather than charity, to the poor since 1976. Construction of the first home in Amherst began in the fall of 2006.

Pioneer Valley Habitat for Humanity, the local chapter of the national group, serves the Hampshire and Franklin County area. Pioneer Valley Habitat is an ecumenical housing ministry dedicated to building homes in partnership with families in need. By the end of 2006, Pioneer Valley Habitat will have built 22 homes in the Pioneer Valley, working with homeowner families who live in the homes that they helped build. Homeowner families buy their homes through no-profit, zero-interest mortgages. More information is available at Pioneer Valley Habitat's website.