RECLAIMING HOPE | Hope is the starting point for Urban Homeworks, the force that brings together low-income families, young professionals, job skill trainees, and volunteers from all walks of life into an exchange that restores homes and creates a space for neighbors to engage.
"Did you break into my house?"
"How did you know I needed new towels?!?”
That sums up many of our conversations after delivering this year’s Thanksgiving baskets to families who are delighted to find little things they didn’t expect. A shower curtain, new towels, or a gift card for groceries are all those unassuming items that are received with a jubilant smile and appreciative gasp of, “Wow, I needed this!”
For some, their exuberance upon receiving their basket wasn’t due to the new Tupperware or blankets, it was the reassurance that they had found a place to call their home and neighborhood.
When Feyruza, our Rental Housing Support Specialist, walked up to deliver one basket, she was stopped short as the tenant raced out to greet and enthusiastically hug her. After 3 years on our waiting list, she had recently moved into a newly renovated apartment. She was distraught when she found out a family member’s health was failing and she might have to move out of her newfound home to help provide care. She was overjoyed to tell Fey that the situation had changed; she would be staying in her UHW apartment!
2014 marked the 10th year of our Thanksgiving Basket delivery. In the beginning, Crew2 ProFloor assembled a basket for each of the families in our rental housing. Two UHW employees delivered those first baskets to the 27 adults and 48 children living in our 16 units.
Ten years later, 9 partner organizations assembled 140 baskets that 30+ Urban Homeworks staff delivered to 488 renters, homeowners, and Urban Neighbors who live in UHW housing. 10 years on, the message we send to our UHW extended family is still the same: "Thank You! We so deeply appreciate you and are honored to call you our neighbors.”
We are so grateful to everyone who assembled baskets, click here for a thank you message.