Single mom on P.E.I. shares experience of owning 60th Habitat home

Published on August 11, 2017

Deanna Lowe and her two sons, Cameron Lowe, left, and Cory MacLean, enjoy themselves in North Rustico recently for That Fun Day. This event was held in celebration of the Habitat for Humanity initiative to build 150 homes across the country for Canada’s 150th birthday and Habitat for Humanity P.E.I.’s contribution to this project.

©THE GUARDIAN/Maureen Coulter

Deanna Lowe is thrilled to put a roof over her boys’ heads - literally.

The single mother of two is a 2017 partner family with Habitat for Humanity and is helping to build a home for the three of them in Rustico.

“It’s kind of a surreal feeling,” said Lowe in a recent interview with The Guardian. “I personally would not have been able to get a home without (Habitat for Humanity), so for me it’s been the best and a dream come true to be able to get my own home.”

Lowe and her boys, Cory MacLean, 5, and Cameron Lowe, 9, are currently living in the basement rec room of her 80-year-old father’s home.

“It’s challenging,” concedes Lowe. “It’s not ideal, but it’s a roof over our head.”

Cameron says he can’t wait to have his very own room.

“In our house now, at my poppies, we have a lot of stuff and we are sleeping downstairs and that is where most of the stuff is.”

The journey into a three-bedroom home for the Lowe family had its challenges.

Lowe was unsuccessful the first time she applied to Habitat for Humanity after she was told that she didn’t meet the criteria because of her income and was encouraged to ask for a raise and/or more hours.

So Lowe did both.

Lowe was then approved to become the 60th build on P.E.I. by Habitat for Humanity.

“It’s kind of nice that they give you that extra push to make you go for better things,” said Lowe. “They pushed me to become a family. They pushed me to get those extra goals that I needed to be eligible for it.”

Becky Mullen, executive director with Habitat for Humanity P.E.I., said

Lowe displayed all the necessary criteria to be part of a Habitat for Humanity build - need, willingness to partner and ability to pay.  

“She talks all about what we do. She tells people about it and she helps to break down some of those myths about who our families are and how the whole program works.”

Mullen said describes Lowe as “upbeat”, “optimistic” and a “very hard worker” since she has tirelessly helped other families build their own homes.

“She has just been so available to help people out and she is just an absolute model Habitat For Humanity partner family. You couldn’t ask for a better ambassador and role model for our families. She is exactly the type of person we love to partner with.”

Lowe said the whole experience has been tiring and exhausting but feels it is well worth it.

“At the end of the day, you know you are getting a house,” said Lowe, adding the anticipated move-in-date is between October and November.

“It’s such a gratifying feeling to know that you built something with your own two hands.”

She also feels this process has taught her boys a valuable life lesson.

“If you really want something, you have to put the effort forward and you have to work really hard to get that,” said Lowe. “By them seeing that I’ve pushed myself, and I keep pushing myself to go through this process, I think it’s a great thing for them to see.”