The wait is over!
For two years, we have been working with members of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, city administrators, and dedicated Family Promise volunteers to complete the latest transitional apartment located in Englewood. It really does “take a village” to complete a project such as this. But thanks to the generosity and hard work of many, this cozy, two-bedroom apartment is finally ready for a family.
Our special thanks go to:
• The Columbia Bank Charitable Foundation which provided a grant that enabled us to purchase and install 13 new double hung windows, a new vanity, faucet and toilet in the bathroom and vinyl flooring in the kitchen. This donation kick-started the renovations.
• Gabriel Pak, owner of CNS Electric LLC, who donated all of the electrical upgrades and labor. His men had the huge job of upgrading decades-old wiring, installing smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and mounting lighting fixtures.
• Tim Woods, long-time friend of Family Promise, funded the renovation of the kitchen. He lent his expertise in cleaning and restoration to the planning part of this endeavor.
Many others went above and beyond to make this apartment a place where a family could live safely and comfortably. They either donated their time or drastically reduced their costs for us. We would like to acknowledge them in the order of their service:
Steve Powell and Bob Major created a thorough project assessment.
Richard Bennett, Bonanomi and Bennett Architects, created original drawings.
Dave MacFarlane led a group of demolition volunteers to remove the existing kitchen.
Marie Strelecki, Real Estate Agent, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage coordinated Coldwell Cares volunteers, arranged the donation of a very gently used kitchen from a client, as well as paint, household items and furniture.
Jim Burke of Burke Built provided free haulage and dumpster space.
Volunteers from Coldwell Cares performed the major clean out, removed old wallpaper, donated household items and furniture.
Eagle Paints, Englewood, donated paint for the apartment.
Dave Miller, owner RE/MAX Integrity, provided the use of his box truck to move the kitchen and furniture items.
Carlos Paints repaired and spackled the walls.
State Farm volunteers put the first coat of paint on the entire apartment.
Mitchel, Park Flooring, Washington Township refinished the wood floors.
Joe Madden, Carpet World, Paramus solicited a significant price reduction of kitchen flooring.
Ray, C&R Mechanical Plumbing and Heating, Westwood completed various plumbing projects and was extremely generous with his time and advice.
Pam Biggs, collected and delivered numerous pieces of furniture saving us time AND our backs.
Evelyn, Valley Window Fashions donated all of the blinds and living room furniture.
Trinity Lutheran Church, Tenafly donated funds to cover future operating costs.
Luckily for us, our accountant, Marie Shanley, is also secretly a designer. She met with many of the people listed above, chose colors and put the finishing touches on what would soon become home to a formerly homeless family. She envisioned a space that would provide them with the safety and dignity that every family desperately seeks. By the time this newsletter is published, a young mom and her two energetic sons and delightful daughter will have moved in.
Our sincere thanks to everyone at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, especially Reverend Bill Allport whose vision it was to use this vacant apartment to house a family, Pat O’Neil who communicated regularly with the diocese to allow us to move in, long-time volunteer, Gary Mason, who encouraged us and supported us through the process and Diana Rodrigues, the church secretary whose tenacity overcame numerous obstacles along the way. Those pictured left to right are the leaders from St. Paul’s who helped make this possible: Michele Simon, Gary Mason, Pat O’Neil and The Rev. Dr. Bill Allport, II.
Blessings to everyone who brought this project to fruition.
Please see additional photos of the apartment below.