Pitt County students help build disabled man's dream home

By  | 

PITT COUNTY, N.C. (WITN) - A dream of home ownership is now a reality for a young man with a debilitating condition.

David Worthington, 32, of Pitt County, suffers from seizures, has extreme anxiety where crowds and sudden noises send him into an episode, and he needs 24-hour care.

Despite the challenges, Worthington wanted to have his independence.

Now thanks to a class assignment at Pitt Community College, he's able to.

Friday wasn't your typical house warming party.

The 2,600 square foot home in Pitt County was constructed just for David, catering to his physical and metal disabilities.

"He has Cerebral Palsy, at some point we might be looking at wheelchairs and so we wanted to plan for all that," explains Darlene Smith-Worthington, David's mother. "We've always worried about what would happen to David if something happened to us."

So last year, they partnered with PCC's architectural technology students, ECU design students and the Greenville-Pitt County Home Builders Association to design a home.

"It really was a no-brainer for us and the kids, for the students to have hands-on experience," says Erin Barnette, with the association.

"They took it from concept to completion," explains Glenn Morrison, the PCC building instructor. "There are things in this house I've never seen before in my 25 years of building and the students will probably never see again."

Built to energy efficient standards and to be handicap accessible, this home also has a soundproof safe room for David.

This summer, the students finished the house.

"I completely believe this was a house that was built by God's love," David's mom says.

The family also has a caregiver suite and another separate living space that could accommodate another disabled person.