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VANDERBILT FAMILY

Angelique Vanderbilt moved here from the south side of Chicago with her family and graduated from Central High School in 1986. But the “pull” of the big city wouldn’t let go. She moved back to Chicago for the next 25 years; renting a townhome, raising children and balancing work while attending school. When she realized the crime in her neighborhood wasn’t going to stop, she moved her family back to Champaign and focused on being a great parent and provider for her two children Aliyah (19) and Antoniyo (28). In Champaign she has worked as a medical assistant, cosmetologist, and bartender. Since starting a new career in health care (2012) she has been focusing on obtaining the training and skills to get involved in clinical research.”   Angel says “I found my calling in the health care field working at Christie Clinic. I feel so “blessed at the opportunities to continue my education through Christie. I have met some wonderful mentors, and I know I can make a real difference if I continue my professional growth.”

Angel learned about Habitat from her mother’s neighbor who owned a Habitat home. She was encouraged to clean up her credit and take care of her financial business. With renewed discipline and focus “I made some big sacrifices and decided if I want to own my own home I had to do this first. I am so happy and proud to have been accepted into the program. I feel as if my life is turning a corner, by becoming a homeowner and sharing this with my extended family.”

Angel is proud that “both my children have been involved in community service; volunteering at shelters, mentoring teens, and supporting the community. They realize the importance of being involved and trying to make a difference as young people–with their peers. They will all be appreciative of the volunteers who come to help them build their home. “I thank Habitat from the bottom of my heart for this opportunity. It shows me by the grace of God– there are good people in the world that we can depend on to help lift us up when we need it.”