WILMINGTON, DE — The City of Wilmington is welcoming four new homeowners to the City’s East Side at a recent dedication ceremony, held on September 30th, sponsored by Habitat for Humanity of New Castle County (HabitatNCC) on the 800 block of Bennett Street.
The event included a dedication ceremony with each of the four Habitat homes located on the 800 block of Bennett Street. The four properties are part of a 12-unit Habitat affordable housing initiative titled “Amala Way.” Amala has the intended meaning of “Peace,” one of the several core values of the affiliate including hope and faith.
During the ceremonies, HFHNCC staff, Board Members, community residents, and supporters gathered to celebrate new homeowners Nema Bass, Antonia Burruss, Marlise Carr, and Lucinda Cain for this momentous occasion. Also in attendance were Wilmington Mayor Michael Purzycki, New Castle County Executive Matthew Meyer, Delaware State Housing Authority COO Cynthia Karnai, Bank of America SVP and Community Relations Manager Connie Montana, and DuPont Global Community Impact Leader Patrick McCrummen.
“This was a long time coming, but it was always the City’s goal to see the Bennett Street project — as well as Walt’s Way on Vandever Avenue— completed as quickly as possible and made available to families for homeownership,” said Purzycki. He continued, “Thanks to Kevin Smith and the staff and volunteers at Habitat for Humanity of New Castle County, who stepped in and took this project on, seven units are now ready for new homeowners and this block is now on the cusp of coming back to life as we continue to work together to strengthen and revive the entire neighborhood.”
For all four Wilmington women, the gift of homeownership is a dream come true and marks the beginning of a brighter future for themselves and their families. Following an invocation by the Rev. Terrence Keeling from Central Baptist Church and remarks from HabitatNCC CEO Kevin Smith, all four women received the keys to their new homes, presented by Purzycki, Meyer, Montana, and McCrummen. They then each received a Bible presented by Eastside community members Sharon Bryant, Joanne Gaitwood, Tina Leatherbury, and Nancy Smith.
Looking ahead, on Saturday, October 23rd, HabitatNCC will team up with Republic Services to distribute Ring Video Doorbells throughout Northeast Wilmington. This initiative is just one part of an expansion into the Northeast of the neighborhood revitalization program called Rock the Block that has improved health and safety with residents on the Eastside for several years. Residents and volunteers have installed Ring Video Doorbells, improved lighting, built trash receptacle covers, cleared away dangerous brush and overgrowth, collected trash, cleaned out clogged gutters, and more.
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