311 River Drive, Appleton
For years, Christopher and Nadine Lwenzya longed for a real place to call home. As refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo, they’ve lived through devastating situations and endured both physically and mentally challenging conditions in refugee camps, as part of their long journey to making their home in Appleton.
Assistance from the World Relief organization helped Christopher and Nadine and their three sons, Blessings, Xavier and Christian, and baby daughter, Isabelle, to settle into a tiny and over-crowded apartment to start their new life in Wisconsin.
Pressed for space, the couple applied to the AHA in the hope of finding an adequate place to live with their family, where the children would have some elbow room and could play outside in a safe neighborhood. When they received the call from the Housing Authority that their family had been selected to move into their new student built home on River Drive, the Lwenzya’s were so thankful. “Now my kids are free and they are playing outside. It’s been amazing. Being here, I’ve found brothers, I’ve found sisters and I’ve found home,” Christopher said.
In October 2016, the AHA hosted a special Neighborhood Meet & Greet event to more formally welcome the Lwenzya’s to their new home. It was a joyful day for the family and all of the neighbors who took the time to drop by and say, “hello” to the family. As a thank you to all in attendance, Christopher got out his guitar and sang a song of his own called, “I’ve Got a Dream” to the crowd, along with Nadine.
These days, the family is settling into a routine and enjoying their affordable home. Christopher speaks several languages and works full-time as a translator, while Nadine cares for their children at home. “For years we didn’t have a place to call home,” Christopher said. “We’ve never seen a warm welcome like this.”