Message from the Executive Director
During the COVID19 crisis in our country we understand that this time can be highly stressful and feel very uncertain! That's why we want to share some of the resources we've made available to assist you with your mortgage payments. If you have any questions, please call us at 717.854.6168 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
York Habitat for Humanity will waive all late payments fees for the month of April and May 2020, if your payment is made by the last day of each month. For those who need it, it will give you a couple of extra weeks to get your tax refunds, corona virus relief payments and start receiving unemployment compensation, if you qualify.
Credit Agency Reporting
York Habitat will not report late payments to the credit bureaus. You will not be penalized for making late payments in April or May, as long as the payment is made by the end of each month. We understand the loss of income due to COVID19 closures is no fault of your own and want you to be confident, you won't have negative remarks on your credit.
Northwest Bank Lobby's are closed until further notice to help prevent incidence of community spread of the Corona-virus. However you can still make your payments at any branch through the drive through. Please check their website to make sure they are open when you intend to make your payment. https://www.northwest.bank/
Habitat families who are in good standing (not more than 30 days late, in the month prior to COVID19) can request a hardship review from our team, if you are unable to make your mortgage payment due to loss of income, related to the COVID19 business closures. Support is determined, reviewed and granted on a case by case basis. We encourage you to reach out to us and we'll discuss your individual situation and needs! Please email us at email@example.com Your email will be reviewed and a phone appointment will be scheduled within 48 hours of your request.
It is never the desire of York Habitat to foreclose on any family who has purchased a Habitat home. However, borrowers who do not make good faith efforts to bring their mortgage current, who are continually 100 days or more late and those who ignore the attempts and services by staff to help eliminate the delinquency through payment plans and agreements end up in foreclosure. Our history shows that we only file a complaint for foreclosure, when absolutely necessary and all other attempts to communicate successfully have failed. I assure you it brings us no joy having to do so. But as trusted financial stewards of the grants, cash and material donations entrusted to us to build these homes, we cannot allow those who refuse to pay their mortgage to do so indefinitely.
Keeping that in mind, York Habitat has honored our Federal and State leaders request to postpone any legal foreclosure action until at least May 1 2020. If you have previously been notified of our intent to foreclose due to severe delinquency, we'd ask you to consider catching up now if you can. The reality is you worked hard for your home, through sweat equity, budgeting sessions, first time home-buyer classes and cleaning up your credit and paying off judgements. Please call our office if you have any questions.
Finally, York Habitat for Humanity is committed to assisting you through this difficult time. We pray continually for you and we are only a phone call away, if you need us. All staff is working remotely, but checks messages daily and will return your call ASAP. Our office number is 717.854.6168. In the next few days please be on the lookout for helpful information from our Family Services Department on where you can get assistance with food and other resources if you need them. For more updates follow us on Facebook.
Be Safe. Stay Healthy!
Dear York Habitat for Humanity Friends,
I am writing to provide another update about the measures York Habitat for Humanity is taking to protect our staff, volunteers and the people we serve during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. The CDC is now asking that group gatherings be limited to less than 10 people. For this reason we are taking additional measures to protect our team and volunteers.
These measures are based on recent guidance from Habitat for Humanity International, local, state and federal public health authorities. We are continually monitoring the situation, and our approach may change as new guidance is provided. We appreciate your patience and prayers as we navigate this delicate situation! You are our first priority
Public Build Site(s) Update
Our build sites are closed to volunteers and partner families for the period of March 16- April 5th, 2020. Your health is our top priority. A notification from our staff will be sent directly to those who are scheduled during this time.
We recognize these measures may be disruptive to your plans, but given the change in CDC's guidance about group gatherings, this cancellation is prudent to help reduce the potential for Community Spread. Please know any volunteer group cancelled during this time will be given priority for rescheduling once this pandemic has passed.
Your Support is Valuable and Needed
Changes to Office Hours & Staffing
York Habitat will discontinue face-to-face meetings until further notice. It is our position that the use of tele-conference, email and other forms of virtual communication tools, we can assist in reduction of Community Spread of COVID-19.
If you have in person appointments scheduled with any of our staff, they will be in contact with you to reschedule or change the method of the meeting. If you are a program participant, your requirements for Sweat Equity and Monthly Budgeting will be waved for the rest of this month.
Any outstanding Committee meetings of the organization must move to conference calls or be conducted via email for the rest of March. Please contact your staff liason for more information. Guidance on April meetings will come at a later date.
York Habitat has many ReStore donation pick-ups scheduled throughout York County for the next several weeks. In order to keep our donors as safe as possible, all pick-ups are being cancelled and will be rescheduled at a later date. We appreciate your patience as we attempt to reduce risk to our community!
York Habitat for Humanity will remain open, but will not except walk-ins at this time. The only persons allowed in the Habitat office are staff and Board Members, until further notice. We Are Open for Business, albeit modified, for now!
Please know that we are constantly monitoring the situation and will update our plans as new details emerge. Thank you for your continued support as we navigate this public health crisis together.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us! Thank you and as always we continue to pray for you and our beloved York County Neighbors, Our State, Our Nation and Our World!
Tammi T Morris
From the Executive Director: Tammi Morris
With the arrival of the first positive cases of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Pennsylvania and Maryland, I wanted to personally reach out and inform you of the current position York Habitat for Humanity has taken for the safety and health of our team members and volunteers.
I, like many of you have attempted to weed through the almost panicked and numerous reports and to balance that with common-science-sense as we move through the next days and weeks! I heard a report recently that said, if we had the same media-coverage and reported on the number of deaths annually from the common flu, as we have seen with the corona virus, the general public would be responding the same way. Many of the concerns are because of the unknowns of this virus. While the fatality numbers are low, any death that can be prevented is sad loss. So it is better to err on the side of caution.
Many of you know Habitat is a volunteer driven organization that gathers thousands of people each year at our Habitat build sites and events. Our local affiliate partners with organizations, schools, businesses and churches locally and all across the United States.
If you have ever been on a Habitat site you know first hand, we take the health and safety of all our volunteers very seriously. You are precious to us! This is no different than protecting you from a work-site injury, but does require different precautions.
NON-LOCAL GROUPS CANCELLED
That being said, we have cancelled any planned groups coming from out of the South-Central Pennsylvania Region, for the next thirty days. This is simply a precautionary measure to help ensure we and they are not unknowingly exposed or exposing each other to the virus. Rescheduling will occur for those groups willing and able to do so, at a later date.
LOCAL GROUPS NOT CANCELLED
Local groups that are currently scheduled will not be cancelled at this time. Our build sites remain open and no changes are being made at this time. As we monitor this situation, we will make changes if deemed necessary. We believe that since these gatherings are generally small with no more than 12-15 people, they present no serious risk to you or your loved ones health if you are not considered at-risk.
That said,if you are in a higher risk group with an auto-immune disease, chronic heart or respiratory illnesses or are diabetic, please follow the CDC's recommendation for social distancing. Your health and safety is what matters most to us!
Business as Usual
The York Habitat for Humanity operations will be business as usual, unless/until a change is deemed necessary and beneficial. We will continue to monitor the national and state health guidance on this matter.
From all of us at York Habitat for Humanity, we pray for your continued health and safety. Thank you for all you do to help build safe, affordable,healthy housing to the most vulnerable among us! Please do not hesitate to contact us, if you have any questions!
Micah Kaiser: We are excited to recognize Micah Kaiser as our June Volunteer in the Spotlight. Micah began volunteering with us last winter, and has volunteered over 122 hours to date on our East Prospect Build Site. When asked why he got involved with York Habitat, he explained, “Something was missing in my life, and I didn’t know what it was. I had a suspicion that volunteering with Habitat was just what the doc ordered, and it turns out, I was right.”
When asked why he has continued volunteering, Micah said, “I will continue to build with Habitat for the rest of my life. In today’s hyper industrialized society, it is easy to find one’s self seemingly isolated and lacking community and community is a vital aspect of a healthy lifestyle, and the people who I have shared time and bonded with at the East Prospect build have graciously accepted me into their community.”
Micah is very passionate about the Habitat mission and he feels that love and compassion are what is going to ultimately lead us to a beautiful future. He says, “Habitat’s mission is important because it is centered in love and compassion, and drives us towards that future.” We are certainly proud to have you spend your time with us, and we love having you! Thanks for everything you’ve done for York Habitat!
We are excited to recognize Robert Patzer as our May volunteer spotlight. Bob began volunteering on a build site in 2015. He has volunteered over 126 hours.
He decided to become involved with York Habitat because, "Habitat for Humanity's work is critical to help those who cannot help themselves and who struggle in finding daily with good affordable housing."
When asked why he has continued volunteering he said, "The camaraderie amongst all the different skill sets of people and each person's willingness to teach and learn from others is phenomenal."
York Habitat is extremely grateful for Bob's dedication to our mission. It is because of volunteers like Bob more families in York will have the opportunity to own their own safe, affordable, and healthy home.
York Habitat for Humanity is excited to recognize Stephen Debelius as April’s Volunteer in the Spotlight. Debelius, a retired Mechanical Engineer, is a huge asset on Habitat’s East Prospect Street build site as one of our regular committed construction volunteers.
“Housing is a basic human need. Providing a nice home is a great way to improve the lives of the future residents,” says Debelius. “It’s exciting to know that this work will play a role in positively enriching the lives of the children as well.”
York Habitat for Humanity is grateful for the continuous donation of Stephen’s time and talent. Because of Stephen, and all of the Habitat volunteers, the East Prospect site will become homes for two qualified York County families.
We are looking for a few good Mentors to help partner with our families in making a successful transition from renters to homeowners. Ideally, a mentor will work with the family on a monthly basis from the time they sign the Habitat agreements until a year after closing on their Habitat home. This is truly a great way to give a hand up! If interested, contact Terri Abruzzese, Family Services Manager at 717-864-6168 Ext. 104 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We had such an amazing turn out at our first Faith Builders Breakfast. Thank you to those who attended and to all who were unable to make it but have committed to partnering with us! We are thrilled to begin this journey with you to put God's love into action.
If you would you like information to share with your church on how they can be involved please contact Athena White at email@example.com for more information!