New Americans welcomed to Cazenovia

Cazenovia College together with Cazenovia Welcomes Refugees (CWR) and InterFaith Works will welcome a family from Afghanistan to Cazenovia. The college, CWR and InterFaith Works teamed up to renovate a college-owned building to return the two-story structure back into a single-family home. After nine months of reconstruction, the family designated for the home is scheduled to move in this summer.

The home located at 43 Lincklaen St. has undergone extensive renovations under the guidance of CWR’s Dave and Carolyn Holmes, and the Irving Construction Co.

Since the home was once student residences and more recently, administrative offices and storage, a kitchen had to be designed and installed with new electrical and water access, bathrooms had to be gutted and modernized along with installation of new flooring and carpet throughout the entire home. Additionally, to bring the home up to code, fire and safety features were updated.

InterFaith Works is the fiscal sponsor and organizational partner for CWR, which raised funds for the cost of the renovations and provided volunteers to assist with renovating 43 Lincklaen.

This is a unique project,” noted Beth Broadway, president and CEO of InterFaith Works. “It doesn’t happen very often where you have a civic group and college committed at this level to welcome new Americans.”

Cazenovia College not only offered the property to be used as rental housing, but students in the college’s residential design class led by Interior Design Program Director and Associate Professor Grace Tallini contributed ideas, technical drawings and design and structural planning services to guide the renovation work. A recent Cazenovia College graduate, Amanda Pressly ’22, began working with CWR her sophomore year at Cazenovia. As the technology assistant, Pressly managed communications for CWR with the Cazenovia community sending newsletters and posting on the website and social media the status of the project as well as requests for items for the residence, including furniture and supplies.

CWR Steering Committee co-facilitators Kathy Bice and Carolyn Holmes also credit two Cazenovia High School students, Quinlan Emhoff and Erin Kuhn, with helping to bring awareness to the project and the contributions CWR is making in the community. Emhoff and Kuhn worked to bring the importance of the resettlement program into the high school. They participated in World Refugee Day, organized a drive for goods, and put kits together to welcome new refugee families. Emhoff also spoke at a CWR event to highlight its activities and recruit new members.

It is really cool to see 43 Lincklaen now as a home for a family,” Quinlan said. “It looks great.”

We are looking forward to welcoming the children of the family into the community,” added Kuhn. “We can babysit, take them for ice cream and all sorts of things.”

As the family moves into their new home later this summer, CWR will continue to act as their liaison to the community.

CWR will be the family’s resource for any assistance they may need, including registering their children for school, finding doctors, dentists, or simply navigating local stores and events,” Bice said.

I am excited to welcome a family to 43 Lincklaen,” noted David Bergh, president of Cazenovia College, who has served on the CWR steering committee since it first began in 2018. “I applaud the contributions of our students that assisted in making this project come to fruition along with the collaboration between the College, CWR and InterFaith Works. It has been a great partnership that we look forward to continuing.”