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Hospital, Habitat for Humanity help YNHH employee build her first home


Antoine Claiborne, Habitat for Humanity of Greater New Haven construction manager, passed a hammer to new homeowner Patricia Lopez-Sandoval (center) after a Jan. 28 dedication ceremony for two new Habitat homes at 62 and 66 Sylvan Ave. Joining Lopez-Sandoval were (l-r): Michael Holmes, YNHH senior vice president; Ron C. Hurt, New Haven Ward 3 alder; Lopez-Sandoval’s children, Candy, Zuliver and Miguel; and William Casey, Habitat executive director.

A year ago, Jacqueline Taylor, a patient care associate on the York Street Campus Medical Intensive Care Unit, was still living in her first apartment, where she’d been for 16 years.

Last month, the beaming Taylor and her new neighbor, Patricia Lopez-Sandoval, proudly showed off their new homes at 62 and 66 Sylvan Ave. in New Haven, which they and dozens of volunteers helped build through Habitat for Humanity of Greater New Haven. Habitat is an international non-profit organization that builds, renovates and repairs houses for families.

“At this time last year, I would never have thought I would have my own house,” Taylor said at a Jan. 28 dedication ceremony.

The new houses are the 11th and 12th Yale New Haven Hospital-sponsored homes since the hospital began partnering with Habitat 11 years ago. At the dedication, Michael Holmes, YNHH senior vice president of Operations, thanked hospital leadership and the medical staff, who have provided financial and volunteer support for numerous Habitat projects.


Claiborne passed the hammer to new homeowner and YNHH employee Jacqueline Taylor, whose children Janaisha, Garrett and Bryce are also enjoying their new home.

Through Habitat for Humanity, families purchase their homes through affordable monthly mortgage payments and invest 400 hours of their own labor to build the houses. Homeowners’ family members pitched in on the Sylvan Avenue projects, working alongside Habitat builders and volunteers. 

“Thank you so much to everyone for the support,” Lopez-Sandoval told hospital and Habitat staff and volunteers at the dedication.

“It was an awesome experience,” Taylor said. “Meeting and working with all the people involved in the project was so rewarding.”

Taylor received additional assistance through YNHH’s Home Ownership Made Easier (HOME) Program, which offers employees who are first-time homebuyers up to $10,000 in forgivable loans and other incentives when they purchase a home in New Haven. The program also provides education and guidance throughout the home-buying process.

Taylor said that when she walked into her new home for the first time, she was overwhelmed.

“I cried,” she said. “I went down on my knees and said, ‘Thank you, God.’”