By Sophie Foster
Kent Attainable Housing has an official headquarters for the first time in its nearly five years of operation in Chestertown.
Located at 114 South Lynchburg Street in Suite D, the nonprofit hosted a grand opening, open house, and ribbon-cutting ceremony at its new location on Friday, Feb. 17.
Attended by employees and volunteers from KAH and a range of community members, the grand opening welcomed visitors into the new space, showcasing demonstrations of the work the organization does and offering refreshments to attendees.
This work entails “breaking the cycle of poverty by building or renovating affordable houses and partnering with low income, working families to prepare for and buy a home,” the KAH website says.
According to Chief Development and Community Engagement Officer Dylan Grimes, the choice to move into a physical space was made after she and Program Manager Terwana Brown were officially hired as the organization’s full-time staff.
“We worked from home primarily, and so we got an office in December of 2022,” Grimes said. “We felt it was important to have a physical space to meet with clients and supporters.”
For Grimes, the most exciting part of this process is that it enables in-person collaboration.
Another key component of this move is “being able to meet the community where they are and having a space to just have conversations with them and listen about what they need,” Grimes said.
This in-person connection includes work with the organization’s volunteers, who do the majority of the manual labor portions of the work, including painting walls, building porches, planting gardens, and installing flooring, according to pamphlets distributed at the grand opening.
According to new homeowner Tamyra Jones, KAH helps the residents it works with to achieve tangible goals and make dreams reality.
“To show your children that if they put a goal in place, they can achieve it,” Jones said. “That’s a part of legacy. When you do have a home, you can pass your home down to your children and, hopefully, your children’s children so they always have somewhere to come back to.”
This is the mentality KAH hopes to maintain in all of its efforts regarding home ownership, and this new location will enable them to do this work more ardently than ever.
According to Grimes, this includes the expansion of the nonprofit, and forging new connections as the still-young organization grows and develops moving forward.
“We want to collaborate more with the College and of course the student body,” Grimes said. “We are going to try to be more present there.”
Students interested in the mission of KAH can call or email them at any time, according to Grimes.
Donations can be made at the organization’s website, kentattainablehousing.org. KAH can be found and followed on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram at Kent Attainable Housing or kentattainablehousing, respectively.
Photo by Sophie Foster
Photo Caption: Kent Attainable Housing can now be found on Lynchburg Street.