About Habitat 1
Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI) was founded in 1976 by Millard and Linda Fuller. HFHI was born at Koinonia Farm, a small, interracial, Christian community outside of Americus, Georgia in the United States of America. At Koinonia, Clarence Jordan and Millard Fuller developed the concept of “partnership housing.” The concept centered on those in need of adequate shelter working side by side with volunteers to build simple, decent houses. Homes were built and sold to families in need at no profit and no interest and the basic model of Habitat for Humanity was established.
The Fullers decided to apply the Fund for Humanity concept in developing countries. Thus, Habitat for Humanity International as an organization was born. In 1984, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his wife Rosalynn took their first Habitat work trip, the Jimmy Carter Work Project, to New York City. Their personal involvement in Habitat’s ministry brought the organization national visibility and sparked interest in Habitat’s work across the nation. HFHI experienced a dramatic increase in the number of new affiliates around the country.
Through the work of Habitat, thousands of low-income families have found new hope in the form of affordable housing. Churches, community groups and others have joined together to successfully tackle a significant social problem – decent housing for all. Today, Habitat for Humanity has built more than 500,000 houses across 80 countries, sheltering 2.5 million people worldwide. Habitat for Humanity is now a true world leader in addressing the issues of poverty housing.
Habitat Asia – Pacific
Habitat for Humanity began working in the Asia-Pacific region in 1983 with a pilot program in India. Since then, Habitat has built or rehabilitated or repaired homes in partnership with approximately 120,000 families – serving an estimated 600,000 people – in dozens of countries and territories around the region (as of June 2011). Every year, tens of thousands of families are helped to acquire new homes or improve existing ones, as well as to access financial and technical assistance.
Habitat for Humanity traditionally carries out its work though partners – independent, locally-run, non-profit, community-level groups. They select families needing Habitat’s support, secure building sites, and organize fund-raising and donations of materials, as well as house construction using volunteers and sometimes paid specialist construction workers. Sometimes partners organize mortgage services, but increasingly across the Asia-Pacific region, the management of loans for home partner families is handled by specialist partners such as microfinance institutions.
Habitat encourages young people to promote creative and responsible ways to support Habitat’s mission. Student- or youth-run Habitat chapters organize events to educate their campuses and local communities about affordable housing issues and the work of Habitat for Humanity; they raise funds; and also take part in building activities either locally or through Global Village trips. There are more than 900 chapters operating in 30 countries and territories; some 40 chapters operate in the Asia-Pacific region.