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Jamaica neighbors paint one priceless picture

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A handful of Jamaica residents got some help with home repairs and beautification last weekend from about 150 volunteers from Washington Mutual as part of the National Neighbor Works Week program.

The program is sponsored by Neighborhood Housing Services of New York City, Washington Mutual and Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation, and it helped about seven homeowners in Jamaica with projects such as house painting, landscaping and foundation repair, as well as neighborhood projects.

The daylong event started at 9 a.m. Saturday, and volunteers and residents laid down their paint brushes, hammers and shovels in the afternoon for a block party.

The event was centered around the home of Dawn Sherman on 153rd Street, with other projects in the area. Sherman inherited her house from her grandmother and had been working with the Jamaica office of Neighborhood Housing Services to secure a rehabilitation loan. But the loan was delayed after Sept. 11 when Sherman’s employment status changed, according to NHS. Saturday’s work helped her to begin some of the projects on her home.

NHS is a citywide non-profit organization with 10 offices in New York City, including one in Jamaica and one in Richmond Hill. The group provides residents with home ownership services, such as rehabilitation loans and grants, home buyer education, mortgage financing and down payment and closing cost assistance.

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