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New partnership gives seniors help with home repair

Rep Franklin Cooke healthy homes .JPG
Mark Arehart
Delaware Public Media
State Rep. Franklin Cooke addressing a group of seniors at Rose Hill Community Center in New Castle.

Delaware Health and Social Services introduces a new pilot program that helps seniors along the Route 9 corridor in New Castle repair and upgrade their homes.

The Healthy Homes program will help older residents make minor repairs and improve safety and accessibility.

It’s a partnership with Habitat for Humanity of New Castle County that addresses everything from mold, to yardwork or accessibility ramps.

State Rep. Franklin Cooke represents much of the Route 9 corridor. He said upgrades like this are key to help older Delawareans stay in their homes.

“They need help. Contractors sometimes take advantage of folks, especially those who are aged. This is a way we can get things done for our seniors,” Cooke said.

Cooke said the partnership with Habitat for Humanity ensures seniors get quality work done from trustworthy contractors.

“People have been here in Route 9 for a long time. Most of (these) are three generational homes. We’ve got grandmother, mother and then the daughter. And they need help. They need help because these homes are older.”

The Healthy Homes Program is for Delawareans 60 and older who live along the Route 9 corridor and either own their homes or have approval from the homeowner.

Mark Arehart is an award-winning reporter/producer. Before returning to Delaware, Arehart was a reporter for WKSU and Ideastream Public Media in Northeast Ohio. He previously hosted Morning Edition and covered the arts scene for Delaware Public Media. He has worked for KNKX in Seattle, Kansas Public Radio, and KYUK in Bethel, Alaska.