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DHSS Press Release

Rita Landgraf, Secretary
Jill Fredel, Director of Communications
302-255-9047, Cell 302-357-7498

Date: June 4, 2013


DOVER (June 4, 2013) - Delaware AmeriCorps members will join participants from Habitat for Humanity's three Delaware affiliates for a Framing Frenzy on Thursday, June 6, on Legislative Mall as they frame a two-story house for a new homeowner in Kent County.

Habitat for Humanity has three affiliates in Delaware: Habitat for Humanity of New Castle County, Central Delaware Habitat for Humanity and Sussex County Habitat for Humanity. Combined, the three affiliates have built more than 300 homes in Delaware. Habitat for Humanity International has more than 1,500 local affiliates in the United States and more than 80 national organizations around the world. Habitat has helped to build or repair more than 600,000 houses and has served more than 3 million people around the world. Of the four Delaware AmeriCorps state programs, 28 members serve with Habitat for Humanity.

Thursday's Framing Frenzy is sponsored by Central Delaware Habitat for Humanity, which has built more than 30 homes, providing much-needed housing solutions for 142 adults and children. The homes are located throughout Kent County: 16 in Dover, six in Smyrna, four in Frederica, three in Milford and two in Harrington. The homes typically have been new construction, single-family homes, with one or two stories depending on lot size.

On Thursday, volunteers from AmeriCorps Delaware and the three Delaware affiliates of Habitat for Humanity will frame a two-story house for Central Delaware Habitat's newest homeowner, Danielle Harrison and her three children, Jamiere, Tyrone and Brooklyn. Her house will be located in Frederica. For families such as Danielle's, the partnership is a "hand up and not a hand-out."

"We live in a decent neighborhood, however, my rent and utilities costs are high," Danielle Harrison said. "This has been a real burden for me and has made it difficult for me to purchase a house with a conventional mortgage. When I learned about the Habitat mission, I believed in my heart that this would be the perfect opportunity for my family and me. Thank you, Habitat, for providing a safe, decent and affordable home for my family."

Delaware AmeriCorps members statewide will be on hand Thursday to assist in the framing of the house, something they have done for several years. After the volunteer construction crew completes the frame assembly, it will be transported by truck to the home site in Frederica.

"The Framing Frenzy is a great way to showcase the important and growing work of Habitat for Humanity in Delaware and its partnership with AmeriCorps," said Rita Landgraf, Secretary of the Department of Health and Social Services, which oversees the Delaware AmeriCorps program. "Each home built for a deserving family impacts all of us through healthier and stronger communities."

In 2012, 63 Delaware AmeriCorps members served approximately 82,000 hours in the community in such organizations as the YMCA, Ministry of Caring, Connecting Generations and Habitat for Humanity, helping to save the taxpayers more than $1.7 million.

"Cooperative effort and the reciprocity of giving and receiving enrich us all," said Charles A. Harris, Delaware AmeriCorps Program Director. "That's why the service of our Delaware AmeriCorps members is measured not only by the quantity of success, but also by the quality of significance."

AmeriCorps engages more than 80,000 men and women in intensive service each year through more than 14,000 nonprofits, schools, public agencies, and community and faith-based groups across the country. AmeriCorps members help communities tackle pressing problems while mobilizing more than 2.6 million volunteers for the organizations they serve. Members gain valuable professional, educational, and life benefits, and the experience has lasting impact on the members and the communities they serve.

Legislative Mall is at Federal and Duke of York Streets in Dover. The day's schedule:
8:30 a.m.: Registration
9 a.m.: Construction begins
11:30 a.m.: Press conference
1 p.m.: Drive to home site in Frederica

For more information about AmeriCorps and other State Office of Volunteerism Programs, visit For more information about how to volunteer with Habitat for Humanity, visit

Delaware Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware's citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations.