Five Habitat families celebrated new beginnings at the dedication of their new homes on Governor Street in Paterson. Community members, volunteers, donors, sponsors, staff, and local leaders were invited to this special Home Dedication Ceremony at 150 Governor Street on Saturday, June 10, 2023, to cheer on five families as they became homeowners and thank the many people and partners who have helped bring these homes to life.
Scott Millard, CEO of Passaic County Habitat for Humanity said, “It has been said often, but I don’t think it can be said too often that days like this are among the best days in the life and work of Passaic County Habitat for Humanity.” He continued...
“Just this past week as smoke descended upon our city we were reminded once again about the critical importance a safe and decent home plays in our health. Because housing is health.”
Paterson Mayor Andre Sayegh congratulated future homeowner Ana whom he remembered chatting with nearly two years ago about her being accepted into the Habitat homeownership program. “Ana congratulations! We’re here and you are home!”
Congressman Bill Pascrell, Jr. reflected on a time when he was Mayor of the City of Paterson in the founding days of Paterson Habitat for Humanity. “When I was Mayor, a few moons ago, we did everything we could to help Habitat for Humanity.”
Senator Nellie Pou expressed her thanks to all those involved with the construction of the five new homes. From the volunteers to the staff, to board members and the administration, everyone played a part in making this dream a reality for the five elated homeowner families.
Councilwoman Dr. Lilisa Mims welcomed the five families to the neighborhood where Dr. Mimms was born and raised. “There’s a song and some lyrics that Luther Vandross says, A house is not a home until someone lives there. Welcome to the fourth. God bless you and God bless these great five families.”
Each family was presented with several meaningful gifts to commemorate the occasion. A handmade quilt donated by the Clifton Quilters, a bible, and a gift basket donated by First Presbyterian Church of Ridgewood.
Future homeowner Eliu shared a few words on the vital role a home plays in raising a family. “The emotion I have today is to smile, to laugh, and to cry because of this achievement. Thank you very much!”
Paige, the daughter of future Homeowner Ana expressed her gratitude to everyone who had a hand in making her family's dream come true.
"Before Habitat I dreamed of having a home with a backyard and my own room. Thanks to my mom and Habitat my dream is coming true.”
Rev. Warren McDowell, Sr. Pastor of the Prophetic Church of God in Paterson prayed alongside the future homeowner families over their homes, the community, and the City of Paterson.
The ceremony was concluded with a few words from Passaic County Habitat’s board president, Giancarlo Di Lonardo as he reflected on how far Habitat’s work has come in Paterson’s 4th Ward. “Habitat is nearing its 300th new home in close to 40 years in existence. We made a commitment about a decade ago to build 75 new homes in the 4th Ward and these five homes are numbers 63, 64, 65, 66, and 67. Around the corner on Harrison Street, you’ll see the last eight.” Giancarlo continued, “Our mission is to provide everyone with a safe place to call home. We are going to continue doing that work. We’d like you to partner with us on that work and we look forward to that partnership.”