November 28, 2023

Caymanians who purchased homes in East End Heights through the affordable housing initiative celebrate at official ‘housewarming’ event

The Ministry of PAHI Parliamentary Secretary Hon. Isaac Rankine presenting gift bags to homeowners at the East End Heights event

Ministry of Planning, Agriculture, Housing & Infrastructure (PAHI) Parliamentary Secretary Hon. Isaac Rankine dedicates new road sign to Marvelle Norine Mclaughlin, MMH

The Ministry of PAHI Parliamentary Secretary Hon. Isaac Rankine, recently joined seven Caymanian families to celebrate the purchase of homes in the East End Heights development through the Affordable Housing Initiative managed by the National Housing Development Trust (NHDT). 

In the last 2 years, 23 Caymanian families in East End Heights have been able to purchase affordable housing through this critical programme.

“We are excited to welcome you to homeownership in East End Heights and to have helped make this possible. It’s an incredible moment that you should be proud of – and one we are happy to share with you,” the Hon. Isaac Rankine said.

 Marvelle McLaughlin Drive

“The ability of Caymanians to buy homes of their own has become a critical issue as property costs continue to increase,” he said. “Every Caymanian wants to achieve the dream of homeownership but that dream is out of reach for too many. The government is meeting this challenge by developing new solutions to develop high-quality and sustainable houses and help Caymanians afford to buy them.” 

The Hon. Isaac Rankine thanked Premier Hon. Wayne Panton and Her Excellency Governor Jane Owen for attending the celebration and said their presence underscored the importance of affordable housing to the government.

“Our Government’s affordable housing initiative represents an opportunity for Caymanians to be on the property ladder, to build families and to have the best life they can have,” the Hon. Isaac Rankine said.

The National Housing Development Trust is a government-owned not-for-profit company overseen by the Ministry of Planning, Agriculture, Housing and Infrastructure. The Trust’s mission is to construct and provide affordable homes in planned communities, offer easier financing opportunities and provide management systems that add security, value and ownership that impact a sense of pride in hard-working Caymanians who are placed in the low and middle-income category.

Under the NHDT’s Affordable Housing Initiative, a total of 23 affordable houses have been built at East End Heights with a goal of completing 50 at the site.

The new homeowners in East End Heights were provided with gift certificates and a celebratory gift bag from the Ministry in partnership with CUC, the Water Authority – Cayman and other generous donors.

“There is a great demand for affordable housing across Cayman and we are focused on developing new solutions to help meet it,” said Mr. Kendal Connor, Director of National Housing Development Trust. “Our drive to deliver affordable housing is matched by a commitment to ensure they are high-quality, sustainable homes that are built by a mix of small and medium local contractors to create good jobs and balanced economic growth.”

In addition to East End Heights, other ongoing development projects under the NHDT’s Affordable Housing Initiative are located across Grand Cayman.

At the same event, the Parliamentary Secretary for the Ministry of Planning, Agriculture, Housing and Infrastructure, Hon. Isaac Rankine, dedicated a new street sign in East End Heights to Marvelle Norine Mclaughlin, MMH. 

“It is an honour to commemorate the life of one of the brightest lights of the East End over the last nearly 100 years,” said the Hon. Isaac Rankine. “Marvelle Norine McLaughlin defined the sense of community, commitment to family and hard work and character we value, which is why it is so appropriate that she will now have a permanent place in East End Heights.”

Marvelle Norine McLaughlin was born in East End in July 1932 and lived there her entire life. Despite limited access to educational opportunities, she earned a range of jobs throughout her working life but distinguished herself as a cook and baker. Her involvement throughout the community was recognised multiple times – with the Order of the Cayman Islands, Medal of Honor – Member Division in 2012 and as an Early Pioneer for the Preservation of Culture of Heritage and Culture in 2014.

“She loved this community, and I’m proud to say the East End community and even the broader Cayman Islands community loved her for it,” Hon. Isaac Rankine said.

The dedication was attended by Ms. Marvelle’s grandchildren, family and friends.

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