- The first amendment introduced by Senator Ayotte (R-NH), which Habitat strongly supported, creates a deficit neutral reserve fund to protect the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS). The amendment passed unanimously by voice vote and will now be part of the Senate budget resolution. Senator Ayotte introduced the amendment because of language in the House Budget Resolution report that eliminates CNCS, and thus national service. The amendment passage was great news for national service because it sent a message to Congress that national service funding should be protected.
- The second amendment introduced by Senator Flake (R-AR), which Habitat opposed, would have ended the 502 direct program, a program central to supporting affordable housing in rural America. Section 502 direct loans are administered by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Housing Service (RHS) for low income home building in rural areas, and these loans are a means of third party financing for homes. Habitat affiliates in rural areas have used 502 direct loans to support their partner families secure a home. As a result of the quick advocacy of Habitat and other supporting organizations, this amendment was not voted on and therefore not included in the managers’ package list of amendments to the Senate Budget Resolution.
- The third amendment introduced by Senator Hatch (R-UT), which Habitat opposed, would have consolidated the Self-Help Homeownership Opportunity Program (SHOP) with the USDA 502 direct loan program, and 523 mutual self-help program. In light of the vast differences among these programs it was unclear how a consolidated program would or could function. In addition, these are very small programs and combining them would not elicit any justified savings that would make any impact on the overall budget. As a result of the quick advocacy of Habitat and other supporting organizations, this amendment was not voted on and therefore not included in the managers’ package list of amendments to the Senate Budget Resolution.
- The fourth amendment introduced by Senator Paul (R-KY), which Habitat opposed, would have significantly cut foreign assistance funding for critical poverty-focused international development and humanitarian response programs. This proposal would directly inhibit Habitat’s ability to work internationally and impact the lives of countless individuals abroad. As a result of the quick advocacy of Habitat and other supporting organizations this amendment was voted down 96-4, and therefore not included in the managers’ package list of amendments to the Senate Budget Resolution.
By Yasheaka OakleySunless skies couldn’t dull the excitement and anticipation created by the long-awaited Walnut Ridge Groundbreaking Ceremony. The Wednesday, March 25 event opened with Habitat for Humanity of New Castle County’s Board President Noreen Poole welcoming a crowd of almost 100 supporters to the ceremonial start of the $1.5 million development of nine new townhomes on Wilmington’s Eastside. “This isn’t the first time that we have built homes in Wilmington’s East Side,” Poole said. “Just 10 years ago we completed the Hope Run development not far from here.” “This project and the other 224 homes we have built in the New Castle County area would not have been possible without the support of generous donors and sponsors like Bank of America, which donated this land to become the future home of nine families, ” she added, speaking from the future home site at the 1400 block of Walnut Street. In addition to the land donation, Bank of America also provided an $85,000 grant for construction. “Our comprehensive approach connects our philanthropy and the passion of our employee volunteers to support affordable housing and community revitalization,” said Chip Rossi, Delaware market president, Bank of America. “Nothing is more foundational to a family’s financial well-being than access to affordable, stable housing and our support of Habitat for Humanity will continue to make a lasting impact for local families.” Joining Rossi at the groundbreaking were more than 25 Bank of America employee volunteers, who have committed 2,015 volunteer hours to the Walnut Ridge project. Rossi added that Bank of America’s team of employee volunteers is excited to support yet another construction project “and to fulfill these families’ dreams by providing them with a sense of community.” Pastor Jerome Lewis of Seeds of Greatness Bible Church blessed the occasion, calling the groundbreaking, “the breaking forth of a dream” as he set the stage for the diverse cross section of government, community, religious and business leaders who also spoke at the event. “DSHA is really proud to be a partner in this project,” said Anas Ben Addi, Director, of the $270,000 in funds his office committed to the development. “What we love about habitat … is they just don’t come in and implant new housing in a neighborhood without taking into consideration what’s going on around the neighborhood … they approach it as a community involvement piece.” Prospective Walnut Ridge homeowner Jennifer Kelly shared how what she called a “wink” from God paved the path to her opportunity for homeownership. “God’s wink brought me here today to share with everyone my personal meaning,” said Kelly, “Habitat means I get to start anew, fresh and from the beginning. It means that God is giving me another chance to offer complete security and stability for my three children.” To demonstrate Habitat for Humanity’s mission to put God’s love into action, CEO Kevin Smith invited leaders from of Habitat’s partner churches to donate bibles to be placed in the foundation of each new townhouse and gifted to homeowners when their homes are completed. “We approached the churches, whose foundation is Jesus Christ, to partner in this project so that the foundation of these families will rest on the Lord,” he said.
- Francine Brown
- Le'Kesha Ashe
- Sydney Alford
- Jennifer Kelly
- Mary Skaats
- Aileen Otero
Habitat for Huanity of NCCo completes construction of Coopers Run,
Dedicates 7-unit townhouse development in WilmingtonBefore we broke ground on our Coopers Run development in Wilmington, we made a commitment to helping change the lives of seven families for the better - families we had not yet met. Twelve months later, we now know those families. Trina and her two children will be residents of Coopers Run, as well as Juliet with her two kids and Laressia and her infant son. Darresha, a daughter of a Habitat for Humanity homeowner, and her young son will be moving in. So will Ruby with her two children, and James, Paula and their two children. "We're consistently humbled and inspired by the personal stories and perseverance of our homeowners," said Kevin L. Smith, CEO of Habitat NCC. "We see homeowners return to school, develop new confidence and secure better jobs." "We learn of improvement in their children’s school performance and about homeowners' children who want homeownership for themselves,” Smith added. "We see families long robbed of hope believing again in themselves, in others, and in the future. Habitat helps short circuit the cycle of poverty for many of our families." It's the kind of support from our friends and supporters that make it possible for these families to have a safe and decent place to live and we're grateful for the support of our partners to help us continue this important work.