Habitat Newburgh selected for 'Affiliates of Distinction' Honor for their service and innovation

Habitat for Humanity of Greater Newburgh is designated one of 23 organizations recognized by Habitat for Humanity International as an “Affiliate of Distinction”.

The Affiliates of Distinction program was established by Habitat International to honor affiliates who demonstrate excellence through meeting or exceeding best practices and to showcase the work of honorees across the Habitat network. Habitat Newburgh is the sole organization in the northeast to receive this recognition. There are approximately 1,400 Habitat for Humanity affiliates across the United States.

“This award recognizes the collective commitment to excellence in carrying out our mission by everyone—volunteers, board, staff, supporters, homeowners—who is a part of the Habitat Newburgh family,” reflects Habitat Newburgh Executive Director Cathy Collins. “We are so grateful for this honor that recognizes our truly extraordinary community that is passionate about partnering with families to create strength, stability, and self-reliance through homeownership and building hope in this community.”

For 17 years, Habitat Newburgh has partnered with local families in need of decent and affordable housing to build and rehab 85 homes in the City of Newburgh. Leveraging the time given by thousands of volunteers each year, Habitat’s model has overcome the challenges faced in a distressed urban area and helped families thrive through homeownership. Its flagship 22-home E. Parmenter Street Development transformed a once blighted block into a healthy and vibrant neighborhood. Current Habitat homeowners contribute approximately $425,000 each year to city and school taxes, and Habitat homes have increased the assessed property values by nearly $9 million.

Special builds programs engage a wide spectrum of groups in Habitat Newburgh’s mission. With women leadership and 80% women volunteers, Women Build is starting its 8th home. Since 2006, 8 homes and an innovative Live/Work house (combining commercial and residential space for a home/business owner) have been miraculously built in 5 days during 5 Home Builders Blitzes. Two veteran families are now Habitat homeowners through the Veterans Build program. The faith community has been a cornerstone of support since Habitat Newburgh’s inception. Faith Build coalitions have sponsored 35% of all homes constructed.

As a Neighborhood Revitalization affiliate, Habitat Newburgh is committed to strengthening the quality of life within the community through partnerships and collaborative opportunities such as the creation of the Newburgh Housing Coalition. Its ‘A Brush With Kindness’ program expands impact by offering low-income homeowners access to affordable minor exterior home repairs and making repairs to community facilities such as homeless shelters, local non-profits, and the local police station. To date, 35 of these projects have been completed. Habitat Newburgh also undertook construction of Phase I of the Newburgh Armory Unity Center.

Based on a comprehensive analysis of the organization, Habitat Newburgh was assessed against standards and metrics across the categories of Habitat for Humanity's strategic plan—building a sustainable organization, building community impact, building sector impact, and building societal impact. All aspects of its work were evaluated—construction standards and safety, family services protocol, communications and press, organizational policies, board engagement, fundraising, volunteer engagement, advocacy and government relations, community development and partnership building.

The recipients of this year’s Affiliates of Distinction include:

• Atlanta Habitat for Humanity (GA)
• Austin Habitat for Humanity (TX)
• Beaches Habitat for Humanity (FL)
• Habitat for Humanity of Champaign County (IL)
• Habitat for Humanity of Charlotte (NC)
• Habitat for Humanity of Clallam County (WA)
• DuPage Habitat for Humanity (IL)
• Habitat for Humanity East Bay/Silicon Valley (CA)
• Genesee County Habitat for Humanity (MI)
• Greater Des Moines Habitat for Humanity (IA)
• Greater Fox Cities Area Habitat for Humanity (WI)
• Habitat for Humanity of Greater Los Angeles (CA)
• Habitat for Humanity of Greater Newburgh (NY)
• Habitat for Humanity of Greater San Francisco (CA)
• Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley (MI)
• Houston Habitat for Humanity (TX)
• Habitat for Humanity of Monroe County (IN)
• Our Towns of North Mecklenburg-Iredell Habitat for Humanity (NC)
• Habitat for Humanity Portland/Metro East (OR)
• Habitat for Humanity of St. Joseph County (IN)
• Habitat for Humanity Tucson (AZ)
• Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity (MN)
• Habitat for Humanity Vail Valley (CO)