On Monday, the Eagles joined Habitat For Humanity Philadelphia to help dedicate a new home in South Philadelphia, just in time for the holidays ...
To afford a one-bedroom apartment in Philadelphia for someone living on a minimum wage salary, that person would need to work 97 hours a week, based on the Fair Market Rent in Philadelphia. The lack of affordable housing for families in need can have negative effects on their lives, their children and their communities.
On Monday, the Eagles helped welcome a Philadelphia family of four into their new home, courtesy of Habitat for Humanity Philadelphia. The team was represented by nose tackle Beau Allen, linebacker Connor Barwin, quarterback Mark Sanchez, the Philadelphia Eagles Cheerleaders and SWOOP. Together, they all welcomed Rhonda Moore and her family into their beautiful new Habitat home in the city's Point Breeze section. The afternoon commenced with a ribbon-cutting ceremony in front of the house and then the Eagles players helped the family decorate the home and a Christmas tree for the holidays.
This ceremony was the final stage of the project as the family began this dream months in advance. Every single person involved with the project was in attendance for the special event.
"It has been a wonderful, wonderful experience and this past year has been life changing," Moore said as she addressed the audience from her front step. "But it happened quicker than I could have imagined. I was at the groundbreaking in March and at the builder's challenge in July and now it's December and my house is ready."
To qualify as a partner family with Habitat Philadelphia, a family has to be able to pay a mortgage demonstrate need for housing and partner with Habitat Philadelphia through the sweat equity process to purchase their home.
Families work for 350 sweat equity hours on their own house or other Habitat houses in lieu of a down payment and to earn a no–interest mortgage.
"She put a lot of hard into this house and that makes it that much more special," Allen said. "It's great that she can look in the house and say you know, 'I built that' or 'I really broke a sweat over that' or 'I stubbed my toe on that corner' or whatever. It's all about those special memories."
Rhonda did have one final request, though. As she described her request Sanchez and Barwin looked over to Allen with a smile – She wanted to be carried into her house.
In response, Allen rolled up his sleeves, tucked in his shirt and made sure that Rhonda entered her house in style as he carried her into the house.
"I was nervous," Allen said. "You know, I've never done that. I'm not married so it was the first time I've done that and I didn't want to drop her, so I picked her up and held on to her pretty tightly."
That moment only added to the excitement of the event.
The Eagles joined together with some of their sponsors to help add to the fun as well. Panasonic gracefully donated a brand new 42-inch HDTV and Sports Authority contributed a $250 gift card to the family. Frito-Lay also provided refreshments for all in attendance.
A 2014 Eagles Care partner, Habitat for Humanity Philadelphia's mission is to transform lives and the city by building quality homes in partnership with families in need, uniting all Philadelphians around the cause of affordable housing. It strives to bring people together to build homes, communities and hope. For more information, please visit HabitatPhiladelphia.org.