On Wednesday, July 10, Sussex County Habitat for Humanity (SCHFH) and the Chief Executive Officers from Bayhealth Milford Memorial, Beebe Medical Center and Nanticoke Health Services broke ground together at a special project for two new homes on Linden Avenue in Georgetown Point, Georgetown.
“Seeking to put God’s love into action, Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build three things, we build homes, communities and hope,” commented Tom Protack, Community Engagement Director for Sussex County Habitat for Humanity at Wednesday’s ground breaking ceremony. “ These three great health care institutions in Sussex County have joined together with the goal to make the residents of our county achieve better health. They have chosen to partner with Habitat to share their energy in helping build these two homes and show their commitment to this collaborative mission.”
President and Chief Executive Officer of Bayhealth Medical Center, Terry M. Murphy, spoke to the assembled crowd which included volunteers from across the state of Delaware and Habitat of Humanity staff.
“Bayhealth is pleased to be a part of the overall work that Habitat for Humanity is accomplishing in Sussex County,” stated Murphy. “A decent, affordable home will provide for a healthier community and give more opportunities to our children.”
To date, Habitat for Humanity has purchased 22 lots in Georgetown Point, the community where the ground breaking ceremony took place on Wednesday. Both mothers of the families who will occupy these new homes are employed in the health care industry. Antonia Velasquez, who works for Atlantic Shores Rehabilitation & Health Center, is excited about her family’s opportunity to be homeowners by the end of this year. Velasquez has a twelve-year-old daughter, six-year-old daughter and two-year-old son.
“I have learned how to put up walls, roofing and painting while I have been in this program,” commented Velasquez. “I am so thankful and ready to own our own home. It means so much to have my children have a place to call home.”
Each Habitat for Humanity future occupant must meet their minimum sweat equity hours, 250 hours per adult in the household and participate in programs that teach them how to maintain a family budget while eliminating debt. Kisha Jones, mother of a ten-year-old son and two-year-old daughter, has been humbled by the whole experience.
“It is just so wonderful, I cannot explain it I am so happy,” commented Jones. “Our kids will now be able to have their own home.”
Employees from Bayhealth Medical Center will volunteer and help build Antonia and Kisha’s homes over the next several months. On August 3, Bayhealth CEO Terry Murphy will join the CEOs of Beebe Medical Center and Nanticoke Health Services for a special build day to demonstrate their personal commitment to this new partnership with Habitat. In addition, there will be opportunities for special fundraising and “fun” raising activities to build collaboration among the employees of all three healthcare institutions. For more information about Sussex County Habitat for Humanity and how to donate or volunteer, individuals can visit www.sussexcountyhabitat.org.