Habitat for Humanity Toronto

Habitat for Humanity Toronto

September 22, 2005 12:54 ET

Families to permanently move away from violence, crime, and decay

Tears of joy flow as Habitat families celebrate moving out of poverty housing into their own homes. Attention: Assignment Editor, City Editor, Lifestyle Editor, Media Editor, News Editor TORONTO--(CCNMatthews - Sept. 22, 2005) - Dedication Ceremony - Low-income families receive keys to their new homes.

When: Sunday, September 25 (2:00 - 3:00 p.m.)

Where: Rotary Drive, 38 St. Lawrence Street (King & River)

Who: Minister George Smitherman, MPP
Councillor Pam McConnell
Habitat Partner Families
Home Donors

Tears of joy flow will flow this Sunday as Habitat families celebrate moving out of poverty housing into their own homes. Sunday, September 25, Habitat for Humanity Toronto, and its funding partners, will present keys to the families who will soon call Rotary Drive home. This new community, Habitat for Humanity Toronto's first downtown development, will provide a new beginning for these families.
Each partner family will purchase their home from Habitat for Humanity Toronto with an interest-free 25-year mortgage.
Several of the families will be available for interviews following the ceremony.
The Toronto Rotary Clubs donated $600,000 towards the development of this project in celebration of the centenary of Rotary International. They, and their funding partners, have contributed thousands of volunteer hours to help build to homes. Generous financial support for these homes was also provided by: Cadillac Fairview and the Toronto Eaton Centre, Esso-Imperial Oil GTA Retailers, KPMG, Sally and Don Wright, and RBC Financial Group. Tools for this project were generously provided by DEWALT.
Land for the development was made available by the City of Toronto and sold at a reduced cost to Habitat for Humanity Toronto. Hundreds of City employees, including the Mayor and Councillor McConnell, joined Habitat volunteers to help build the homes.
Founded in 1988, Habitat for Humanity Toronto, a non-profit, non-denominational Christian organization, welcomes, without discrimination, all people to build simple, decent homes in partnership with low-income families. All administrative costs are funded by the operation of two Habitat ReStores which sell donated new and quality used renovation materials. Building at a rate of one home every 24 minutes, Habitat for Humanity has built more than 200,000 homes in over 100 countries.


NOTE TO EDITOR: Below is a profile of one of the families who will be moving into Rotary Drive.

For Further Information:
Neil Hetherington, CEO
Tel: 416-755-7353 ext. 223
Cell: 416-436-4190

The Salmon Family

Calvin Salmon describes his community as "a ghost town with people." He and his younger siblings, Shanna and Christian, live with their mother Hallie in unsanitary and unsafe living conditions. At night roaches invade their beds, mice run across the floor, and the neighbourhood resounds with shootings and loud music. Drug deals are made openly in the community, in front of children and residents. Once Hallie was at the scene of a shooting and held the man as he bled from six bullet wounds, praying with him there and later in hospital.

Though they miss their extended family, the Salmons have never regretted the decision to move to Toronto from New York City in 1983. Hallie has raised six children as a single parent - three of whom will be living at home with her at Rotary Drive - and has been working since she was 14 years old. But despite her efforts Hallie hasn't been able to afford the down payment on a home away from the crime and decay of her current neighbourhood.

Hallie credits her faith for keeping her and her family close and strong through much adversity. When she moves into her new Habitat home, the first thing she says she'll do is get down on her knees and thank God for the gift of a new beginning.
/For further information: www.torontohabitat.on.ca/ IN: HEALTH, JUSTICE, SOCIAL, OTHER

Contact Information

  • Neil Hetherington, CEO, Habitat for Humanity Toronto
    Primary Phone: 416-755-7353 ext. 223
    Secondary Phone: 416-436-4190
    E-mail: neil@torontohabitat.on.ca