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Originally sticking just to fund-raising, a group of young adults at a Bel Air church is now taking a more hands-on approach to building homes with Habitat for Humanity.

The Young Adult Ministry at Oak Grove Baptist Church, on Churchville Road, is hoping to raise the $75,000 they need for a Habitat house and then to build the house themselves.

Brian Watts, head of the ministry, said the group hopes to build the home in 2010.

"We have been involved with several builds for them [Habitat] and Oak Grove has given money for various builds in the past," said Watts, whose father, Michael Watts, owns Bel Air Construction, in Forest Hill, and coordinates the church's building efforts.

"We really felt, rather than just throwing some money at Habitat, we would really provide all the help needed," Brian Watts said. "We haven't seen a Habitat house from start to finish and that's kind of been the goal."

He said the group also hopes to partner with other churches and local businesses in the venture.

The group's 30 to 40 members have currently raised more than $40,000, including $20,000 at a July golf tournament.

They are also planning to sell Christmas trees later this year to raise money.

Watts said the ministry has some previous building experience after helping with rebuilding efforts in New Orleans last year.

He does not yet know where the home will be built in Harford County.

"I have always been impressed with Habitat's vision and their work, and our family's had a close relationship with Habitat for a few years now," he said.

"We wanted to be a part of blessing the community in a very tangible and a very big way," Watts added. "We were really drawn to that."

Kaite Anderson, who has been with the group since 2006, said the original plan was to start building this fall, but that may now be moved to the spring.

"We are definitely really excited. The limited experience we had in the past was really amazing, so we are really excited to be there for the entire planning and building," she said.

For more information or to donate, call Brian Watts at 410-838-9898, ext. 228.


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