December 6, 2015: Habitat holds a home dedication ceremony for the Moo Family.
“We never thought we could own a home before we met up with Habitat,” said Hsar Moo, father of Habitat’s newest partner family. “We cannot wait to finally own a home of our own, that we can pass down to our children and generations to come.”
Originally from Burma, the 78th Habitat for Humanity of Greater Pittsburgh (HFHGP) home recipients, the Moos, were displaced by civil war between the Karen National Union and Burmese Government. Hsar Moo and Sar Ka Nyaw were forced into a Thai refugee camp where two of their three children were born. The family’s challenges continued after immigrating to America in 2008. Language and cultural barriers have made it difficult for the Moo parents to find living wage jobs.
South Hills Interfaith Ministries (SHIM), a local Pittsburgh nonprofit providing assistance to refugees, recognized the Moos’ need for improved housing. The family of five had been living in an overcrowded two-bedroom apartment in the South Hills of Pittsburgh. The complex, tainted with drug use and limited assistance with pest control made the environment unsuitable for raising children. SHIM referred Hsar Moo and Sar Ka Nyaw to HFHGP’s homeownership program. After completing 350 hours of sweat equity volunteer work and signing an interest-free mortgage with Habitat, the Moo family is excited to celebrate their first Christmas in this new home.
Habitat would like to thank all the sponsors and community groups who made this home possible, with a special thank you going to Chase Bank for donating the home and to Lowe’s Home Improvement for contributing $25,000 in funds to the home through a nation Women Build sponsorship. Additional sponsorships and volunteer hours were provided by organizations including ADP, Gateway Health, K-Love Radio, National Association of Women in Construction, Pittsburgh Pirates employees, Ryan LLC, Summa Technologies, Sunnyhill Unitarian Church, Travelers Insurance, Zurich American Insurance, and many individuals from the community. “It’s great to see so many people are willing to come out and help us with our new home,” Hsar Moo commented. “Thank you so much to everyone that comes out to help or gives money to let us finally have our own place to live.”