Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven and its subsidiary, the New Haven HomeOwnership Center, hosted its 4th annual Multicultural Festival this past Saturday with its partner Start Community Bank. Since 2009, these neighboring institutions dedicated to serving the needs of New Haven residents have come together once a year to host this springtime festival meant to celebrate New Haven’s diversity.
“New Haven is a city of diversity,” said NHS Executive Director Jim Paley. “It’s part of its strength. This festival is a true celebration of life, diversity, and the spirit of the people of New Haven.”
Bill Placke, President and CEO of Start Bank, agreed. “The purpose of this event is to celebrate the Whalley Avenue community and the people who make it a great place to live and to work.”
Art also had a prominent presence at this year’s festival. In tandem with the “Inherit the Earth” theme, NHS of New Haven and Start Community Bank asked local students to depict what “inheriting the earth” meant to them. An art show took place on the NHS campus commemorating those who brought the expression to life on paper.
The festival concluded by presenting awards to individuals who have done exceptional work to improve their communities. The honorees included: Joanne Sciulli, Executive Director of Solar Youth; Mattie Stevenson, an avid community gardener; and Lanissa Gardner and Jackie Failla, two active students from Common Ground High School. All of our honorees demonstrate esteem, respect, creativity, and a love of the earth that is an example to us all.
Thank you to everyone who supported our festival and who came out to celebrate with us. We look forward to next year’s event!
Photos courtesy Tom Ficklin.