Skip to main content

From hope to home: Houston mother chosen by Habitat

Written By: Shelley Vanker, UT Physicians | Updated: February 5, 2024
Habitat for Humanity new home owner

Jennifer Sneed is surprised on live television with a home from Houston Habitat for Humanity. (Photo by: Kacie Fromhart, UT Physicians)

Under a sea of blue confetti, Jennifer Sneed was surprised on live television with her own home through the Houston Habitat for Humanity program.

“I’ve never had anything of my own,” she said while wiping tears from her eyes.

Community investment

UTHealth Houston is the proud title sponsor of the home in partnership with KPRC-TV.

“What we’re doing is contributing to somebody’s well-being and ultimately this will affect them in a good way for years to come,” said Cynthia Huehlefeld, associate vice president of business operations for the practice plan. “We want them to be happy, healthy, and prosperous.”

Dream come true

The home, still under construction in the new Robin’s Landing development in northeast Houston, is a dream come true for Sneed, a single mother of two girls, 8 and 3 years old.

When the father of her oldest daughter died, Sneed says it was his encouraging words that helped to keep her going.

“He always told me you can do it, it’s just going to take some time, but you can do it,” Sneed recalls.

And when she was accepted by Houston Habitat for Humanity two months after applying in 2023, she says his words were ringing loud.

“They called me out to sign some papers and explain the whole process to me. How sweat equity works,” she said. “That’s when I kind of started thinking about my child’s father like, okay, here goes the moment he was talking about. It came! My goodness!”

I’ve never had anything of my own.

Jennifer Sneed, new homeowner

Forever home

The three-bedroom home is a welcome change from their current apartment. Sneed’s youngest daughter has autism, and the noise of the complex and busy streets is challenging.

“It’s a little hard living in an apartment because it’s not as quiet as we want it to be,” she said.

Sneed spent the day helping to build the house that will soon become her home.

“I cannot wait to fix her up,” Sneed said proudly. “She’s going to look so beautiful. I already know exactly what colors I’m going to have.”

After being accepted by Houston Habitat for Humanity, Sneed will clock-in 100 hours of sweat equity building homes for the program, another 50 hours of financial literacy courses, and 50 hours of community volunteer work.

“I get to buy a home – it will be my own with my kids, and as they grow older, it will be theirs,” she said.

View pictures from the surprise event below.

Habitat Homeowner Shoot-13
As the clinical practice of McGovern Medical School at UTHealth Houston, UT Physicians has locations across the Greater Houston area to serve the community. To schedule an appointment, call 888-4UT-DOCS.