With tears of joy and gratitude, Ashraf and Nema Wadie, along with their children thanked the community and Raritan Valley Habitat for Humanity for helping them build their home and a brighter future. At their home dedication ceremony on Saturday, February 23, Mrs. Wadie shared, “I’m so grateful to all of you who helped us build this home.” Karolin, 17 years old, added, “I can’t wait for my family to grow in this house, for all the new memories and friendships that will be made here.”
The Wadie Family qualified for the affordable homeownership opportunity, attended financial literacy classes and contributed over 500 hours towards the building of their home, working alongside volunteers from corporations, faith-based organizations, and the community. Raritan Valley Habitat for Humanity will extend an affordable 0% interest mortgage, which will significantly reduce monthly housing expenses and allow the Wadies to build savings, invest in education and job training, and build financial independence.
Mayor Phillip Kramer warmly welcomed the family to Franklin Township noting that the town exceeded its affordable housing goals thanks to the community. “We’re happy to partner with Raritan Valley Habitat for Humanity,” said Kramer, “and give people, like the Wadies, who work and give back to the community a chance to be a part of the community.” Freeholder Brian Gallagher added, “Participation is the word of the day. Everyone here has participated in this home. This proves that if we all take care of our community, it makes things work. People want to give. People want to help.”
Raritan Valley Habitat for Humanity’s volunteer Family Support Committee coordinated the home dedication ceremony, and the volunteer weekly build crew, also known as “The Wednesday/Thursday Faithfuls”, worked with the Wadies and corporate and civic groups to construct the home. The Tri-County Literacy Council donated books and bookstore gift certificates to the Wadie children, the Bridgewater Garden Club presented a Garden Basket, and Somerville High School students, Arjun Vijayavenkates and Will Gonzalez, of the Habitat Youth Council, gave the Wadies a handmade decorative sign. Magic 98.3 was on site to cover the event.
Major supporters of the construction of the home include the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development’s HOME Program and the Somerset County Homelessness Trust Fund, Investors Bank, the Lowell F. Johnson Foundation, the PSE&G Foundation and many other corporate and individual contributors.