Genet Alemayehu and Yitawos Mohommed are Lancaster Habitat’s newest future homebuyers. They are currently working towards the purchase of an energy-efficient, single-family home on East Washington Street in Elizabethtown.
Originally from Dire Dawa, Ethiopia, Genet and Yitawos have two daughters, Edelawit (age 9) and Meron (age 9 months). They, along with Genet’s mother, currently live in an overcrowded apartment in Mountville. Genet’s mother has one of the bedrooms and the children stay in their parents’ bedroom. The only storage they have is a 3’ X 2’ closet that is located in a communal area of the complex. And, while the landlord has been responsive in addressing extermination, the family has continually battled roach infestations.
Genet is packer for a West Hempfield Township company, where she has worked for over the past five years. Yitawos is employed as a caregiver in Elizabethtown. Despite their full-time employment, the couple cannot afford the rent of a larger living space in the area where they work and where Edelawit attends school.
The family learned about the Habitat program through friends who are homeowners. In fact, they even volunteered at the ReStore and donated their hours to help their friends earn sweat equity. It has been their dream to own a home.
With homeownership, they anticipate big plans for their future. Yitawos was a nurse in his native country, and he plans to return to his career by earning his degree to become a registered nurse. But, their first and primary goal is homeownership.
They are very excited to begin the process, and are most looking forward to meeting their new neighbors. When we asked if they have any concerns about the journey to homeownership ahead of them, Yitawos replied, “No. We are full of confidence.”