Kenneth and Evelyn Sell share many special memories of building Habitat homes with their friends at Congregational United Church of Christ in Greensboro. As Evelyn’s 95th birthday was approaching in March of 2020, Kenneth read a newspaper article that inspired him to honor her with a very special birthday gift – a Habitat home built in her honor. The article was about Rebecca “Becky” Lee, a life-long teacher at Smith High School who left her entire estate divided equally among seven local non-profits, including Habitat Greensboro. Evelyn is also a former Smith High school teacher and taught alongside Becky for several years.

“It was through a gift in 1968 that we were able to purchase our first home. About 20 years ago, Evelyn and I enjoyed several days helping to build a Habitat home that our church had gifted. We hope this gift to Habitat for Humanity will bring great joy and satisfaction to Osman, Shahinaz, and their two boys as they become homeowners this year,” says Kenneth of their gift.
The home sponsored by Kenneth and Evelyn kicked-off in February 2020 for future homeowners Osman and Shahinaz. Seeking better educational opportunities and a healthier and safer place to raise their children, the couple immigrated to the United States from Khartoum, Sudan, in 2016 with their two sons, Gasan (14) and Gosai (11). When they learned about Habitat Greensboro’s homeownership program from a Habitat Greensboro homeowner friend, the couple knew that this would be the perfect opportunity for their family.

Thanks to Kenneth and Evelyn’s generosity, the family is looking forward to moving into a neighborhood where there are many other young families with children. Shahinaz says, “We are so grateful to Habitat Greensboro for giving us this opportunity to purchase our own home. Our boys are so excited they will finally have their own rooms! Even though we’ve only been in the United States a few years, we feel this is our country now.”

To learn more about how you can support affordable housing in our community, please visit our website at, or reach out to one of our development team members.
Habitat Development Staff: Christine Byrd | | 336.232.0134
Marian Ragsdale | | 336.232.0132