Audry Allen stood with her family and friends on her front porch, smiling at the crowd of volunteers who had gathered to help her celebrate the dedication of her home. Her hard work had paid off; she had managed to finish the NOAHH homeownership program quicker than most, taking advantage of every opportunity to work her sweat equity. Her own hard work and the support of volunteers, staff, and friends made her dream of homeownership come true.
At her dedication, she spoke of her journey after accepting the traditional ceremonial gifts, and she invited her friends and the gathered crowd to tour her brand new home (she had yet to move in) afterward.
Staff from Paterson Habitat for Humanity, who volunteered with NOAHH through RHINO, and students with Jewish faith group NCSY Frisch were building in the neighborhood on other NOAHH sites and came to witness the ceremony and help present the gifts. Volunteers are an essential part of the homeownership program, helping reduce the costs of home-building to make it affordable, and, perhaps more importantly, connecting with partner families (on site, at dedications, and at other opportunities) and spreading the mission of affordable housing.
As with every Habitat home, Allen’s home is an inspiration to all who worked on it and all who willc all it home.