PITTSBURGH - Autumn Coleman and her family are thrilled to be first-time homeowners: Autumn will receive the keys to her beautiful Habitat home in East McKeesport at a dedication ceremony on Monday, August 29, 2016. The Coleman family will be the 88th local family to purchase an affordable home from Habitat for Humanity of Greater Pittsburgh (HFHGP). This opportunity would not have been possible without the support of CHASE Bank, who donated the home to Habitat and contributions from many volunteers and supporters who helped rehabilitate the home.
Dr. Howard B. Slaughter, Jr., President & CEO of Habitat for Humanity of Greater Pittsburgh said, “Habitat’s job ismade easier when working with wonderful families like the Coleman’s. We know children of homeowners compared to children of renters are 116% more likely to graduate from College and are 59% more likely to own a home within 10 years of moving from their parent’s home. Homeownership also results in a better quality of life and the equity in the home creates generational wealth, which is why Habitat works so diligently to help families achieve homeownership.”
U.S. Congressman Mike Doyle said, “Ms. Coleman has demonstrated her dedication to family and communitythrough the many hours of service and sweat equity she has shared with Habitat for Humanity. She and her family will be great neighbors in East McKeesport, and her children will have a safe place to grow up, along with the space they need to study, play, and enjoy their new home. Children of homeowners tend to have higher achievement levels in school, which is an important benefit of homeownership. Habitat for Humanity of Greater Pittsburgh continues to assist many families who thought homeownership was out of their reach, but because ofHabitat, they can achieve their goal of homeownership too.”
“Habitat is a blessing for helping us,” says Ms. Autumn Coleman, who cannot wait to move into this 4-bedroom, 1.5 bathroom home. “I am grateful for my family to have a better place to live, and a safer place to live.”
Autumn’s journey to homeownership has not been an easy one. Autumn is a single mother who works as a truck driver for a local retail store. She and her four daughters – ages one, five, seven and eight—are currently living in an overcrowded 2-bedroom apartment in a public housing project. Two of Autumn’s daughters are disabled and her two eldest daughters have been subject to bullying at school. Though Autumn has kept their apartment in good shape, the neighborhood they currently live in is plagued with violence. One of her daughters was outside during a shooting that occurred and narrowly missed being injured. Autumn’s personal property, including her vehicle, hasbeen subject to vandalism. Because of this violence in the area, Autumn keeps her children indoors most of the time, out of concern for their safety.
But Autumn’s hard work is about to pay off, and her children will soon have a yard and home where they can safely play and grow. To qualify for Habitat’s homeownership program, Autumn has invested 350 hours of “sweat equity”work volunteering on her home and the homes of others and has completed financial literacy courses to ensure she has the skills needed to remain a successful homeowner for the long-term. Autumn will purchase her home from Habitat through a no-interest, 30 year mortgage. Mortgage payments from Habitat families like these are recycledinto a “Fund for Humanity” where all payments are directed towards future Habitat projects. This demonstrates howan investment in a single family will be leveraged to assist others in need. Every dollar invested is truly an investment in the Greater Pittsburgh community. During the ceremony, the family will sign an interest-free mortgage certificate and recognize the donors, contributors, and volunteers that made this blessing possible. After the ceremony, tours of the home will be provided and the Coleman family, along with volunteers and Habitat staff, will be available for photos and interviews.
The rehabilitation of this home was funded through sponsorships and volunteer support from local corporate partners including ADP, Bayer Corporation, Doubletree Hotel, Jewish Federation of Pittsburgh, People’s Natural Gas, Providence College, Travelers Insurance, SUNY Canton, UPMC, and Valspar. Additional volunteer support was provided by groups from: Bluffton University, Carnegie Mellon University, Cornerstone Ministries, Federated Investors, First Unitarian Church, Giant Eagle, Green Building Alliance Emerging Professionals, Knights of Columbus, National Health Corps, Newlonsburg Presbyterian Church, Notre Dame Club, Point Park University, Society of Women Engineers, St. John and Paul Parish, University of Pittsburgh Pre-Med Club, and Victory Family Church. The Coleman family’s home dedication demonstrates Habitat’s mission of putting God’s love into action, by bringingpeople together to build and rehabilitate homes, supporting communities and spreading hope.
About Habitat for Humanity of Greater Pittsburgh
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Pittsburgh is dedicated to the elimination of substandard housing in Allegheny County. Since 1986, the organization has provided affordable homeownership and home repairs to nearly 140 low-income families. This year marks Habitat for Humanity of Greater Pittsburgh’s 30th anniversary of bringing people from all walks of life to build and repair homes, communities, and hope. For more information, visitwww.pittsburghhabitat.org. You can also find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HFHGreaterPittsburgh and Twitter at www.twitter.com/HabitatGP.
About U.S. Congressman Mike Doyle (D-PA-14)
Mike Doyle is currently serving his eleventh term in Congress representing the 14th District of Pennsylvania, which includes the City of Pittsburgh, communities in the western, southern, and eastern portions of Allegheny County, and several communities in northwestern Westmoreland County. His top priorities include creating jobs and revitalizing communities in the 14th District through economic development and high-tech initiatives, improving access to affordable, high-quality health care, improving public education, ending homelessness, and expanding federal safety net programs to meet the needs of the most vulnerable Americans – especially children, older Americans, and those who are disabled, poor, or unemployed. Doyle is a graduate of Penn State University. Prior to serving in Congress, Doyle was a small business owner and the Chief of Staff for State Senator Frank Pecora.
Contact: Michelle Morgan, Family Services Manager
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Pittsburgh
Office Phone: 412-351-0512, x 10 Cell Phone: 412-523-8896 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact: Matt Dinkel, Communications
U.S. Representative Mike Doyle Office Phone: 202-225-2135 Email: email@example.com