January 4, 2021 – Westwood, NJ
Volunteers with Habitat for Humanity of Bergen County are building desks for children who are attending school remotely. Desks 4 Homes, sponsored by the McInerny Jansen Family Foundation, Lakeland Bank and Milwaukee Tools, is providing children with a dedicated space that will ensure a more successful remote learning environment.
In its second round of desk distribution, 20 children attending the Fanny M. Hillers School in Hackensack will collect desks on January 9th at the Habitat Bergen ReStore, located at 121 Carver Ave in Westwood, between 10 am and noon.
“The children are so excited to collect their very own desks!” said Teri Capparelli, Habitat Bergen ReStore Director. “One student asked me when she had to return her desk, and when I told her she could keep it, she was overjoyed. There wasn’t a dry eye insight.”
“Many children learning remotely do not have access to an appropriate learning environment,” said Roxanne Camejo, Vice President and Community Development Officer of Lakeland Bank and Board President of Habitat Bergen. “Thankfully, we have volunteers willing to build these simple desks that will have a profound positive impact on a child’s learning experience.”
“On behalf of the Fanny H. Hillers School, known as the Academy on the Hill, we are sincerely grateful for this partnership,” said Joy Dorsey-Whiting, principal of the Fanny M. Hillers School. “Thank you for blessing our students with the gift of education. These desks will help our students prosper so they can be the best they can be.”
The volunteer group building the desks call themselves “The Greyheads.” They are comprised of retired handypersons who volunteer frequently on Habitat’s build sites, as well as in a variety of other ways. They are generously donating their time and talent to build these compact, simple desks that are ultimately helping a child remain focused while learning remotely at home during the pandemic.
The hard costs for building each desk is approximately $35—help Habitat build more desks! Donations can be made at www.HabitatBergen.org.
Habitat Bergen was founded more than 26 years ago and has built 28 homes for hard working families throughout Bergen County. Habitat believes that access to safe, decent, and affordable housing helps families break the cycle of poverty. Habitat Bergen’s current building project is a three-bedroom, single family home that will be made available to a qualified veteran family in 2021. The Desks 4 Homes initiative supports both local children in need of desks, while raising important funds to help the affiliate reach it’s mission of building decent homes for low income families.
“Never has it been more important to have safe and decent home in which to shelter in place,” says Maureen Cameron, Habitat Bergen’s Executive Director. “One in six households spend more than half of their income on shelter, which forces them to forego other necessary expenses like food and health care. We want to change hearts and minds and provide more low income families with decent housing.”
For more information about Desks 4 Homes contact Teri Capparelli at 201-446-9246 (mobile) or [email protected] or visit habitatbergen.org.
About Habitat for Humanity of Bergen County
The mission of Habitat for Humanity of Bergen County is to provide decent, affordable homes for hardworking Bergen County families. We join in a common goal with other affiliates of this international organization to eliminate poverty housing and homelessness by working in partnership with people in need. Using volunteer labor and donated funds and materials, Habitat builds or rehabilitates simple, decent, homes and sells them to low income families through a zero-interest mortgage. Habitat is a people-to-people partnership, which joins together all people, regardless of race, nationality, religion or socioeconomic status. For more information visit www.habitatbergen.org or contact Maureen Cameron, Executive Director at [email protected]
Photo Caption: Desks 4 Homes Volunteers – Volunteers known as “The Greyheads” at work in the Habitat for Humanity of Bergen County’s workshop.