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How Homeownership Made An Impact on Carmelo “Melo’s” Future


Carmelo “Melo” Robinson is prepared and ready to take on the world beyond his Habitat home – about to embark on his college journey. Having recently been awarded the PC Promise scholarship by Habitat for Humanity of Horry County Faith Partner and founding congregation, First Presbyterian Church (FPC) of Myrtle Beach, the sky is the limit for Melo. FPC of Myrtle Beach was also a sponsor of Melo’s Habitat home when it was constructed four years ago.

“I would have never thought in a million years I would have been awarded a scholarship to attend Presbyterian College for the next four years….. a blessing it is!” states Melo.

In the fall of 2024, Melo will attend Presbyterian College. He plans to major in History with a minor in Communications while also continuing his football career. He plans on becoming a Lawyer with hopes of also becoming a Politician. Melo was an athlete and player on the Myrtle Beach High School football team throughout his high school years. He was also a dedicated student who excelled academically.

According to Presbyterian College, “the Presbyterian Promise Scholarship is a commitment by Presbyterian College (PC) to recognize students for their merit and affiliation with the Presbyterian Church. PC seeks to develop students academically and spiritually in this signature scholarship.”

It’s no surprise that Melo was selected as the recipient of this scholarship and opportunity. Having moved into his Habitat home at the age of 14, Melo knows the value of hard work and determination. He learned this from his mother, Cotisha Pagan, who became a homeowner in 2019.

Cotisha worked through the Habitat Homeowner program for 3 years before finally becoming a homeowner. Having lived in an apartment with her three children, she originally applied to the program to provide the best life she possibly could for her children, including owning her own home. As a family, 400 sweat equity hours were performed.

“On the weekends, after working 40 long hours during the week, my mother would devote her time to working in the ReStore or going out on a build,” explains Melo. “I remember going to the homeowner meetings every month and meeting other kids in the program, which was a lot of fun and I learned different skills. When my mother finally become a homeowner, I remember the smile on her face. She was so thankful to the volunteers and the staff as she knew that it couldn’t have been possible without them.”

Moving into a home of their own created stability and an opportunity to thrive for Melo and his family. And, as Melo embarks on a life of his own, he’s that much more prepared for independence and his own future as a homeowner. “The home impacted my life because it taught me a lot about cutting grass, and I learned how to do small repairs around my house, which I will need later in life as I begin my own journey.” Melo also notes that when he moved into his Habitat home he “no longer had to share a room with my little brother”, which he loved. 

As he prepares for the next exciting chapter of his life and the endless possibilities of it, his advice to children whose parents are working through the Habitat homebuyer program is to “…keep up the hard work. It isn’t always easy but it’s worth it in the end. There were days that I can remember my mom wanting to give up.” Melo remembers encouraging his mom not to give up and to keep working toward her goal of homeownership.

Because Cotisha never gave up and because Melo learned the value of hard work and the importance of home, he is now on his way to a successful and independent future where he can be anything he wants to be, all while remembering the sacrifices made and support provided to get him there. Melo thanks the donors and volunteers of Habitat for Humanity for their hard work, support, and dedication that didn’t go unnoticed by his family. “I would like to thank each one of them for making a difference in our community and in our lives,” says Melo.

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