Habitat for Humanity

Let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an everflowing stream. Amos 6:8

The challenge of both the prophets and of Jesus to show hospitality, regardless of human condition, is what motivates us to feed the hungry, house the homeless and teach the children. Building Habitat homes is a specific response to the urging of the prophets and the example of Jesus. We are excited to be agents of hope in the JOSANA neighborhood, through Flower City Habitat for Humanity. Click here to learn more about Flower City Habitat for Humanity

  • About the JOSANA Project
  • Volunteer
  • Contacts
  • Houses

About the JOSANA Project

Third Presbyterian Church is challenging faith-based groups and other organizations to help build 18 new homes in the JOSANA neighborhood, located in northeastern Rochester. This project will be completed in partnership with Flower City Habitat for Humanity.


The JOSANA neighborhood is part of Rochester’s "Crescent of Poverty" and is located west of the soccer stadium and is dissected by Interstate 490. Jay, Orange, Ames, Brown and Campbell streets are its main thoroughfares.

JOSANA faces many dire problems: the neighborhood is poor, with thirty percent of families having incomes below 30% MFI (Median Family Income); 53% of properties are owned by absentee landlords, and many of these properties are in poor condition; incidences of lead paint poisoning are high, particularly among children.

The Renewal Project

In partnership with the City of Rochester, Flower City Habitat for Humanity launched a multiyear house-building program in the JOSANA neighborhood. The goal of the program is to build 100 houses in 10 years. So far, with the help of dozens of sponsors and thousands of volunteers, more than forty houses have been completed in and around Jay St. and Orange St. since 2007. This represents a significant number of families and children who now have a new place to live -- and a safe place to play.

The Role of Third Church

Through the generous donations of the 2008 Capital Campaign, Third Presbyterian Church has set aside enough funds to sponsor four or five new houses for Flower City Habitat. However, by forming coalitions with other churches and other organizations, Third Church hopes to use this money as seed money, to sponsor several new homes in the JOSANA neighborhood.

How it works

For each home, Third Church will assist with organizing a coalition of congregations and other organizations. More important, perhaps, Third will commit to fund 25% of the $65,000 needed for a coalition to complete the construction of a safe, decent, and affordable home for a low income family. Coalition members will be responsible for raising the rest of the funds (i.e., approx. $49,000).

How to Help

Construction volunteers arrive on days at 8:45 AM (9:30 AM on Tuesdays) and can expect to work until 3:30 or 4 PM. The first 30-60 minutes is dedicated to training volunteers for the day's tasks. Any skill level can do this work!! Habitat volunteers are male, female, "experienced," senior, youthful (over 16)--all are welcome! Volunteers should bring a lunch.

Current Coalitions

Construction is currently underway at a house at 726 Jay Street. The house is being built by the Get It Straight/Pittsford Mendon Student Coalition and Third Presbyterian. This coalition is the first to be comprised of a commercial entity, a student group, and a church.

Volunteers Needed!!

The easiest way to volunteer to work on a Habitat house is by visiting the Flower City Habitat for Humanity website at www.rochesterhabitat.org and clicking the green "Volunteer" button. Or go directly to http://www.volunteerup.com/ProjectCal.asp?o=238 and follow the steps to register.

Help Us Build New Coalitions

Do you know of a group or organization outside of Third Church that would be interested in joining one of our sponsored coalitions? If so, please contact:

Thomas Gillett: Chair of Habitat Committee
TPC Habitat Steering Committee

Rev. Lynette Sparks: Associate Pastor at Third Presbyterian Church
(585)271-6513 ext 106

Join the H@T Steering Committee

Third Church is looking for volunteers to serve on the Steering Committee for H@T

Possible roles include:

  • Finding & contacting prospective coalition members
  • Making presentations to the community about the JOSANA Project
  • Serve as one of TPC's two members of any one of the coalitions to be formed.
  • Publicize TPC's Habitat Project
  • Assist with volunteer coordination


To learn more about other individual volunteer opportunities at Flower City Habitat, please visit http://rochesterhabitat.org/volunteer/individuals.shtml

For in-kind donations of building materials & construction services, please see http://rochesterhabitat.org/donate/in-kind_giving.shtml

Habitat for Humanity - Contact Information

Thomas Gillett: Chair of Habitat Committee
TPC Habitat Steering Committee

Rev. Lynette Sparks: Associate Pastor at Third Presbyterian Church
(585)271-6513 ext 106

Third Church has partnered with many groups to build houses.