COVID-19 Update: April 16

Good afternoon, Friends, 

At times I feel sidelined. At other times I feel like I am in the middle of the action. So which is it?  

We are in week five of a stay-at-home order where non-life sustaining business operations are on hold. Exact numbers are unclear, but dozens of people have died in Lancaster and Lebanon Counties; who knows how many more have been spared by our collective acts of caution. I never imagined that something could put life, as I knew it, on pause.  

And yet, there is movement. It’s not the swinging of hammers, but the sharing of information and resources to evaluate our situations and make plans for various scenarios.  Lancaster Lebanon Habitat for Humanity has brought more of its situation and purpose into focus. And new opportunities are starting to present themselves in partnership with other agencies–to care for our homeowners, homebuyers, and ensure that we are able to adapt and build homes and housing solutions.  For this reason, we are launching a new appeal called Home Resiliency.

We are committed to preserving homeownership for our 91 homeowners. And we are pressing forward to ensure that the new families in our homeownership program, who are still living in substandard housing, will have a safe, warm, and dry home that they help build.  Through our Home Resiliency Fund, we will protect homeownership for those current Habitat homeowners who may be experiencing loss of wages due to COVID-19 by offering them mortgage repayment assistance, such as waiving late fees, providing forbearance and advancing taxes. This fund will also enable us to acquire new properties, so that the 12 future Habitat homebuyers currently in our program can move more quickly into decent, stable homes.

Any online gift, now through the end of June, will be applied to Home Resiliency (unless otherwise requested, of course.) 

We will have more details about Home Resiliency on our website in the coming days. For now, thank you for your continued prayers and support of our homeowners and homebuyers.  

Be well and be blessed,
Andrew Szalay
Executive Director
Lancaster Lebanon Habitat for Humanity

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