Women take over North Charleston Habitat for Humanity project

Monica Flores (left) and Shannon Kammer carry a piece of plywood for a Habitat for a Humanity house on Celestial Court in North Charleston on Saturday. Both women work at Boeing and were volunteering for a week of work by teams of women.

Women took over the construction of a Habitat for Humanity House in North Charleston last week.

Several female teams put on the roof of a house on Celestial Court Monday through Saturday. They measured, cut with power saws, pounded with hammers and lifted nail guns and hoisted plywood over their heads.

It's not unusual for women to volunteer, according to Charleston Habitat for Humanity Construction Manager Dan Jones. But they usually get pushed off the power tools by men, he said. Setting aside a week almost exclusively for women allows them to branch out.

A team from Boeing worked on the house Saturday. Some of them had a good bit of experience.

"I've been renovating a house with my husband," Shannon Kammer said after using a nail gun on the roof.

Monica Flores also seemed pretty comfortable climbing and pounding.

"My dad was a carpenter," she said. "So I knew you were supposed to hold it (the hammer) down here."

Some had not done much carpentry but welcomed the opportunity.

"It's interesting to learn about construction," Natasha Wiest said. "Women can do everything."

Jones said he hoped the three-bedroom home would be completed in September. Habitat for Humanity, a nonprofit, builds houses for low-income families.

Lowe's, the hardware superstore, held clinics to train any women who wanted to know more about power tools.

Other female teams working on the home included Charleston County government, Skirt magazine, the city of North Charleston, AMCS property management and MeadWestvaco.

Reach Dave Munday at 937-5553.