CLEVELAND - Seven houses. One neighborhood. Dozens of volunteers. Huge progress.
It's a big day on Colfax Road in the lower Kinsman neighborhood of Cleveland's east side. The first of seven rehabbed homes on the street is being dedicated.
Meanwhile, work on the rest of the properties is continuing. On Thursday, volunteers again swarmed around the 7300 block of Colfax, preparing the vacant houses for new occupants.
It's all part of NewsChannel5's Building Better Neighborhoods campaign. The project is made possible by a Cleveland City Council grant, the Cuyahoga County Land Bank, Rebuilding Together , Slavic Village and the Burten Bell Carr Development Corporations, and a host of other agencies.
Greater Cleveland Habitat for Humanity is spearheading the housing restoration effort and Executive Director John Habat was on-scene with other top Habitat personnel to hand over the ceremonial keys to the first completely refurbished property on the street.
The dedication took place in the large, shaded back yard of the home now belonging to Georgettia Pickett and her two young daughters. Pickett, who is required to invest "sweat equity" in the project, was moved to tears during the proceedings.
Habitat officials told NewsChannel5 they expect to have new families in all the Colfax homes in 2013 -- and have another multi-house renovation project ready to start in Cleveland's Slavic Village neighborhood.
Play the extra video clips to hear from the various entities involved in the neighborhood revitalization - including new homeowner Georgettia Pickett.
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Two families have a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.
Greater Cleveland Habitat for Humanity gave thanks to its volunteers at its annual volunteer recognition meeting.