Construction resumes at Habitat for Humanity home

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Last month, construction work at a Greater Rochester Habitat for Humanity home came to a stop after thousands of dollars’ worth of tools and materials were stolen from the property.

The home is one of many Habitat Homes being built in the city’s Beechwood neighborhood, and employees from one local company are stepping in to keep this new home project stay on track for completion. Many people in the community were outraged by this burglary. Now they’re volunteering their own time to help a family waiting to move into their new home.

“Yes, a theft can be deflating, but it’s not overwhelming,” said Habitat’s Tim Guillemette.

Guillemette said the work of helping deserving families move into their own home will never stop.

About two weeks ago someone broke into a storage shed on the property located at the corners of Baldwin Street and Garson Avenue. Thousands of dollars’ worth of tools and materials were stolen. Since then, the community has stepped up.

“The support from our neighborhood is overwhelming. The support from our partners like RG&E is overwhelming. The hard work of our families is overwhelming. That’s what we get to see every day,” said Guillemette.

On Friday, several RG&E employees volunteered their time putting up the home’s insulation. The power company’s Avangrid Foundation also threw in its support.

“We have $10,000 that was secured by the Foundation to go towards essentially what they have lost, and just moving forward with the project. Things like siding, and materials because of the labor costs, and supply shortages. Those add up quite a bit. So, everything we can do for Habitat right now goes a long way,” said RG&E spokesman Marc Barraco.

Neighbors like Cheryl Robinson are thrilled to see work resume on the home.

“I’m just grateful that there were means available to put that back into place. We were horrified to find out what happened, the whole shed being broken into, and everything taken,” said Robinson.

Habitat is currently building 11 new homes in the Beechwood neighborhood. News10NBC asked Guillemette what can be done to prevent more thefts from these sites.

“We’ve consulted with Habitat International about this, seeing what other affiliates are doing. We’ve been closely in contact with the Rochester Police Department. They’ve done some safety assessments and walk-throughs for us. They’ve given us some resources,” said Guillemette.

Rochester police tell News10NBC no one has been arrested yet for the burglary. If you have any information on this case, call 911.