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Eric's Story

Home Repairs Are a Promise to Future Generations

Family at kitchen sink

“Home is a place for me and my loved ones to get away from the things going on in the outside world, including the elements.”

Eric, a military veteran and lifelong resident of Strawberry Mansion in North Philadelphia, lives with his partner Kia and their son Eli in his childhood home, originally owned by his grandparents and later passed down to the couple through his mother. A 105-year-old rowhome, this house holds not only lifelong family memories but a promise for future generations.

As with many older houses in Philadelphia, the home needed critical repairs. As Eric and Kia transitioned to working from home and started homeschooling their son, it was imperative to find a solution. While the journey to home repair brought many challenges, including fighting for military benefits, Eric continued to look for programs that would keep his home safe, warm and dry. 

Finally, in the summer of 2023, Eric applied for and was accepted to Habitat Philadelphia’s Home Repair Program, which has worked alongside more than 900 homeowners since its inception in 2011, including many veterans.  

After a thorough assessment, Habitat’s build team got to work on the most critical repairs in October 2023. Eric’s leaking roofs were replaced, holes in the walls were bricked up, and the collapsing kitchen floor was rebuilt. Along with foundational and structural work, a bathroom tub was recaulked, new alarms were installed, and a new fire extinguisher was added to the kitchen. By December, just in time for the holidays, Eric’s kitchen was fully functional again. 

Family on porch

“The whole process went smoothly, and we definitely feel safer now,” says Eric. “With all the time we spend here working and studying, we can really focus and enjoy it instead of worrying.”

“Eric and Kia were great to work with,” said Andrew Thayne, Build Lead Project Manager. “Eli asked us during the assessment if we were going to fix their kitchen floor, so it was really heartwarming to see the family pleased with the results.”

Eric’s story is one of countless in our city, which is why Habitat Philadelphia is committed to completing 125 critical home repairs this year. By working alongside existing homeowners to find peace-of-mind and preserve their assets for generations to come, we get one step closer to achieving our vision of a city where everyone has a decent place to live.