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Dinniman, Habitat for Humanity Mark Completion of 14 Homes in West Chester
WEST CHESTER (September 22) – State Senator Andy Dinniman recently joined local officials and volunteers from Habitat for Humanity of Chester County (HfHCC) in marking the completion of a project that brought 14 homes to the borough’s East End neighborhood.
“One of the best things about Habitat for Humanity is that they come into communities, they do the work, and they empower residents and community members in the process,” Dinniman said. “I want to thank everyone who assisted with this project and congratulate the new homeowners.
“I also think it’s pretty incredible to see the number of young people from West Chester University who embraced the spirit of volunteerism and community service is pitching in with this project. They are a credit to both the university and the local community,” he added.
Dinniman joined HfHCC Executive Director Chip Huston; West Chester Mayor Carolyn Comitta; Borough Council members Diane LeBold and Jim Jones; Jean Yoder, widow of West Chester Mayor Dick Yoder; Pat Bokovitz of the Chester County Department of Community Development; and dozens of volunteers in dedicating the final two homes in the Bolmar/Poplar Place community.
The project began in 2007 at the former Davis Oil property located at the corner of S. Bolmar and E. Barnard Streets in West Chester. Construction on the final two homes, located at 711 and 713 East Barnard, began last summer and was heavily funded by the Westminster Presbyterian Church and the First Presbyterian Church of West Chester.
In dedicating the homes, Huston called Dinniman “a longtime friend and supporter” of HfHCC.
Both Huston and Dinniman also recognized the work of the Chester County Department of Community Development, the assistance of West Chester Borough Council in guiding the project through local approval, and the instrumental efforts of the late West Chester Mayor Dick Yoder in working behind the scenes from its inception.
“Dick Yoder continues to mean so much to this community and his fingerprints are nearly everywhere you look in West Chester,” Dinniman said. “This is just one more way that his legacy of service and love for his hometown will live on.”
In addition to the 14 homes in West Chester, HfFCC has built 115 homes in Coatesville. Together, those homes are part of more than 140 in total that the organization has constructed in Chester County, including in both Downingtown and Phoenixville. Next, HfHCC is eyeing a potential project in the West Grove area.
In order for a family to own a home, they must contribute 200 hours of volunteer work or “sweat equity” and complete several homeowner classes. After settlement occurs, the new homeowners must make payments on a zero percent interest mortgage.
Applicants for homeownership are selected based on their need for affordable housing, ability to repay the mortgage in full, and willingness to participate in the “sweat equity” program.