September 14, 2015: Habitat is thrilled to introduce you to our newest partner family, the Ducks!
Tamika Duck moved back to Pittsburgh a few year ago for a fresh start, following an abusive relationship. She and her two children, now ages 3 and 5, lived in a Women's Shelter for one year before they found permanent housing assistance through a program run by the Greater Pittsburgh YMCA. The apartment they currently live in is in a rough neighborhood, where Tamika's children are exposed to violence and drug activity. The apartment itself is in poor condition, and Tamika constantly worries for the health and safety of her kids.
Despite having two degrees, Tamika struggled to find work upon her return to Pittsburgh. She sought help in Goodwill's Employment Training center, where she completed their Health Care Office Skills program. In summer of 2014, Tamika earned a full-time job with UPMC. In addition, Tamika is an incredibly active member of our community. She is an avid volunteer and even serves as the President of the Kingsley Association's Parents Council in East Liberty.
Tamika has been researching homeownership for several years, and has even been taking Financial Management and Home Maintenance classes at Neighborworks. She is ready to undertake the commitment and responsibility of being a Habitat homeowner, and is well on her way to completing her required 350 hours of sweat equity work: "I know that you have to work hard for all that you want, and that's why I have been persevering to achieve all my goals. Having a home that will create a safe and comfortable environment for my children is a dream that I hope to make a reality."
We are working to fulfill Tamika's dream by rehabilitating a 3-bedroom home for her family in Penn Hills. This home is a very special home, a perfect match for such a special partner family. The home is being rehabilitated in honor of Pope Francis, in recognition of his inspirational leadership of the Catholic Church, with the support of an anonymous donor. The donor has challenged us to raise an additional $40,000 to bring people of all faiths together to work on this house. If you are interested in supporting Tamika's family and our Pope House, please visit www.pittsburghhabitat.org/events/PopeFrancisHouse.
To make a donation to support this project for Tamika and her family, please click here!