Habitat home groundbreaking was longtime coming for Winchester resident Miranda Short

Published 4:00 pm Monday, February 20, 2023

The groundbreaking for Miranda Short’s future Habitat for Humanity home on Lincoln Street was anything but ordinary on Thursday.

For one, no ground was actually broken since construction on the house had already begun.

Also, the ceremony took place in the living room of another home due to rainy weather – the ceremony was previously rescheduled due to cold temperatures.

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But none of that mattered because, for Short, the end of a long journey is finally in sight.

“If ever there were someone that has overcome obstacles, it is Miranda,” said Amanda Dube, the interim director of Habitat for Humanity of Madison and Clark Counties. “She is someone when things did not always go the way she had written them out for the future. She overcame those things, worked hard and found the help that she needed.”

Short, a Winchester native, bounced between it, Louisville and Indiana after she graduated from high school. Eventually, she settled back in her hometown for good while pregnant with her son, Drake.

Needing assistance with necessities like a place to live, Short contacted Clark County Community Services and found support and a mentor in caseworker Mary Jo Hunt-Hatchett.

After settling down, Short found success working in the cleaning industry and opened her own service that specializes in commercial and residential cleaning.

Ready to take the next step, Short asked Hunt-Hatchett how to apply for a Habitat home, and in January, she was approved for the program.

Short must put in over 200 hours of “sweat equity” at other Habitat build sites and take financial literacy courses as part of the program.

She was all smiles on Thursday and expressed gratitude to many of the people assembled at the ceremony.

“I want to thank Clark County Community Services for believing in the woman and mother they got me to be and now the business owner and owner that I am,” Short said. “We had so many obstacles to get through, and I am thankful that I had so many people that were patient with me from the start of becoming a mom and until now.”

Short’s home is the community’s “hometown build.” It is sponsored by the city of Winchester, Clark Regional Medical Center, Central and Community Trust banks, First Christian and Salem Presbyterian churches and many more.

It is also the final home to be built during the first phase of the Lincoln Street revitalization project, which has seen a partnership between the city and Habitat build five other houses over the past two years.

Winchester Mayor JoEllen Reed took time to reflect on it and the future of housing in the area.

“This has been a long time coming down this street. The city of Winchester and this administration is dedicated to affordable housing. It is one of our top priorities for the next four years,” Reed said. “We are going out, buying homes that are dilapidated, then clearing them and building affordable housing.”

The mayor commended Short.

“This young lady is setting an example,” Reed said.

While the weather outside may have mirrored parts of Short’s journey, one thing is for sure, it will be sunshine ahead as she settles into a home of her own.