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Bergen Habitat to Begin Multi-Year Assistance to Sandy Victims

Homeowners can apply now for assistance from the volunteer organization

North Jersey was forever changed after Hurricane Sandy hit the area, devasting homes in towns like Little Ferry, Moonachie, Hackensack, South Hackensack and Carlstadt. Now the Bergen County chapter of Habitat for Humanity, based out of Oradell, is looking to institute a five-year relief plan to assist homeowners rehabilitate, rebuild and return to their homes.

"Habitat International is committed to disaster relief and is rolling out programs for six target locations, including Bergen County," Jacey Raimondo, executive director of Bergen County Habitat said. "We're looking at long-term reconstruction over the next three to five years."  

As part of the long-term relief efford, which could begins sometime in spring 2013, Habitat Bergen is waiting on the delivery of a GM mobile response unit outfitted with Bosch Power Tools. The specialized truck would serve as the mobile office of a volunteer coordinator between flooding reconstruction projects in basements and first floor level homes.

To be eligible for Habitat's help, Raimondo stated that families must meet the same criteria as regular clients of the non-profit.

"Our first priority will be the elderly, the disabled, those with special-needs children, the poor and those on fixed incomes," she said. "They must have insufficient coverage from flood insurance to pay the cost of repairs. And of course, the house must be their primary home."

Habitat is currently looking for residents to submit information through their website to be considered for assistance. At the same time the volunteer organization is working on Sandy relief efforts, Habitat will also be continuing to work on completing its outstanding projects in Oradell and New Milford.

Residents can apply for help if you think your home might qualify for Habitat's rehab services; volunteer for Sandy rehabilitation projects; or support Habitat's efforts through a donation.

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