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Crider Gardens Sign Unveiled Thursday in Surprise Event for Barbara Crider

Crider Gardens, the 8-unit apartment complex located at 26 Amherst Street in Sanford, had its sign officially unveiled yesterday in a ceremony honoring YCCAC Executive Director, Barbara Crider. The event marks a milestone in both the approach to addressing the housing crises in local communities, and in recognition of Crider’s efforts, throughout her long tenure at YCCAC, to enlist creative solutions to some of our most perplexing problems.

Barb was unaware of the sign unveiling until she was brought to the site by Deputy Director, Carter Friend. There, she found a gathering of some 40 people, including YCCAC Board President, Claudette Dupee; Sanford Mayor, Anne-Marie Mastraccio, and Deputy Mayor, Maura A. Herlihy; representatives from Sanford Housing Authority, Maine Housing, Kennebunk Savings Bank, and others who partnered in development of the complex; YCCAC senior staff—and retired senior staff, Connie Garber, Debby Downs, and Jennifer Quimby.

Claudette Dupee opened the informal ceremony with remarks about Barb’s 30-plus years in Community Action. She listed the many positions Barb has served during her time at YCCAC (Director of Community Services, Director of Health Services, Deputy Director, and for the past 12 years, as Executive Director), and spoke of Barb’s absolute commitment to YCCAC’s mission: “to alleviate the effects of poverty, attack its underlying causes, and to promote the dignity and self-sufficiency of the people of York County, Maine.”

“Crider Gardens is indicative of the impact Community Action can have in a community,” Dupee said. “With the opening of these apartments to local residents, we achieve the tenet of our mission. And no person is better suited to be named for this housing complex than Barbara Crider. We celebrate Barb—her work, her achievements, and her lifelong passion for community service—with the official naming of this complex for her.”

Deputy Mayor Maura Herlihy offered remarks for the City of Sanford. She thanked YCCAC—and Barb particularly—for helping to alleviate the shortage of affordable housing in Sanford by opening this complex to Sanford residents. She also spoke of the partnership that YCCAC and the City of Sanford has maintained for many years, and how that partnership has served to benefit the Sanford community. Herlihy noted her personal appreciation for apartments, and welcomed this complex as a model solution for other communities to adopt.

And finally, Barb spoke to the gathering. She was surprised by the event, she said, and thanked those in attendance for coming. She talked about the long journey to develop this building into an affordable apartment complex. It was a process, with partners, planners, developers, and with support from YCCAC’s Board of Directors. The apartment complex affords tenants to pay no more than 30% of their income for housing, regardless of the size of their paycheck. The apartments provide security, stability, and a measure if independence for the families who occupy them.

The unveiling of the Crider Gardens sign gives official name—and recognition—to the complex, and to the one most responsible for its realization.

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