After about a year of construction, the wait is over and six families can finally move in to the Belmont Cottages on Avon Street. Habitat staff held a welcoming ceremony Saturday for the families who can now call Belmont home.
One man, who couldn't afford rent a year ago, will be enjoying the first home he's ever owned. Chauncey Banks' mother was never able to afford a home, but now for the first time, he can, thanks to the generosity of others.
"In this world, sometimes we just take things for granted,” said Banks. “But a lot of other people can spend a long period of their lives, and they're hard-workers, they're honest people, but they never get that chance to own their own home.”
The families got to tour the newly finished space that they all spent hundreds of hours helping to build.
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Charlottesville President Dan Rosenweig says while the project took around a year to complete, this moment is something these families have been looking forward to their whole lives.
"A home is hope, and it's a little wind in the sails for people through the Habitat program,” said Rosenweig.
Rosenweig says the families’ futures are now looking much brighter.
"Other things open up for them as well - employment opportunities, educational opportunities. A home is a pathway to a much, much brighter and sustainable future,” said Rosenweig.
The families all received their new house keys and a plaque to commemorate the day.
Banks says he's excited for the next step he never thought would come.
"I'm just happy to be here, and I'm going to be even more happy when get to spending time with my next-door neighbors. So all I can say is it's been wonderful,” said Banks.
Habitat for Humanity staff says the property was donated to them from a Charlottesville realtor, making the whole project possible.
The families will all start moving into the properties starting Sunday.
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