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Dow joins Habitat for Humanity Egypt to build homes

March 20, 2010

The Dow Chemical Company (Dow), a leader in science and technology, has joined hands with Habitat for Humanity (HFH) Egypt to build a better future for underprivileged Egyptians. The “Building a Better Future” project would provide needy families with new homes and clean water facilities to ultimately help create sustainable avenues for livelihood.

The one-year project, which will last from January 1 to December 31, 2010, has three primary goals: provide 25 loans to build and renovate houses for rural families in Upper Egypt; provide clean water installation for families currently living with their livestock; and research and pilot a housing prototype using low cost technologies. The project will be undertaken in Taha, El Gazaer in Minya Governorate and Manshyet el Sadat in Beni Suef Governorate.

Dow and Habitat for Humanity International have been community partners since the early 1980s. Dow’s commitment and contributions reach beyond science and technology to embrace the Human Element and to help provide sustainable, affordable housing to those in need. Dow lends support to HFH in many ways, including house sponsorship, product donation and employee volunteer work crews at builds around the world. Since 1983, Dow and Habitat have had a strong partnership, building and renovating homes for thousands of families in communities around the globe.

“We are proud to expand our partnership with Habitat for Humanity to serve the needs of the people of Egypt,” said Mohamed Sabry, Country Manager, Dow Egypt. “We have been present in Egypt for more than 30 years, and we are committed making a meaningful impact in our community. With its hands-on approach, we believe that the Habitat for Humanity Egypt project has the potential to radically transform the lives of those in need in Egypt.”

Engineer Yousry Elias Makar, National Director of Habitat for Humanity Egypt, said: “We are pleased with Dow’s collaboration to provide sustainable developments and communities. Families supported through this partnership will enjoy improved, renovated or totally new homes which will provide protection, safety, hygiene and an improved social well-being. I trust the Egyptian saying “the basket with has two handles should be carried by two”. I am certain that Dow can greatly contribute to improving the lives of under-privileged families.”

The “Building a Better Future” project will be managed on a quarterly basis by a Local Management Committee set up by HFH Egypt in each of the three communities. The committee members will be trained by HFH Egypt staff to organize themselves, democratically elect representatives and oversee the implementation of all project activities. The scope of the committees’ activities will include beneficiary selection, loan collection, construction and volunteer mobilization.

Dow will support HFH Egypt’s project by supporting the building and renovation of 25 homes through loans for beneficiaries chosen by the local management committees. Each family will be provided with clean water supply and separate living quarters for humans and livestock. Dow Chemical will also support the efforts of HFH Egypt engineers to create a prototype house – an environment-friendly home that depends less on the use of steel. The house will offer improved ventilation and the construction materials used will have utilized less carbon in its production stage. The new prototype will be introduced to the community and presented as a demonstration model.

Dow is actively involved in humanitarian efforts and socio-economic growth initiatives. Most recently, the company donated US$500,000 to the Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund. Dow also works with CHF International on the Kick-Start Aceh program to provide funds to community businesses and vocational training to those affected by the tsunami. The Dow Live Earth Run for Water is another key initiative aimed at solving the global water crisis.

About Dow in Egypt

Dow has been present in Egypt for more than 30 years. Today, Dow in Egypt runs a manufacturing facility and a commercial office. The commercial office covers Egypt and North Africa and supports three of Dow’s global businesses, namely Basic Plastics and Chemicals, Performance Plastics and Chemicals and Market Facing Units such as Dow Oil & Gas and Dow Coating Solutions. Dow Mideast Systems is Dow’s manufacturing facility comprised of a production unit, an administration building for offices and quality control laboratories. In 2006, the Dow Polyurethane Systems team of experts protected a historical treasure by wrapping the 85-ton granite statue of the ancient Egyptian pharaoh Ramses II in VORACOR™ rigid polyurethane foam system ensuring a safe, 10-hour journey from downtown Cairo to the Grand Egyptian Museum near the Great Pyramids of Giza. For more information about Dow in the Middle East, please visit

About Dow

Dow combines the power of science and technology with the “Human Element” to passionately innovate what is essential to human progress. The Company connects chemistry and innovation with the principles of sustainability to help address many of the world’s most challenging problems such as the need for clean water, renewable energy generation and conservation, and increasing agricultural productivity. Dow’s diversified industry-leading portfolio of specialty chemical, advanced materials, AgroSciences and plastics businesses deliver a broad range of technology-based products and solutions to customers in approximately 160 countries and in high growth sectors such as electronics, water, energy, coatings and agriculture. In 2009, Dow had annual sales of $45 billion and employed approximately 52,000 people worldwide. The Company’s more than 5,000 products are manufactured at 214 sites in 37 countries across the globe. References to “Dow” or the “Company” mean The Dow Chemical Company and its consolidated subsidiaries unless otherwise expressly noted. More information about Dow can be found at

About Habitat for Humanity International

Habitat for Humanity International is a global non-governmental organization that welcomes to its work all people dedicated to the cause of eliminating poverty housing. Since its founding in 1976, Habitat has built, rehabilitated, repaired or improved more than 350,000 houses worldwide, providing simple, decent and affordable shelter for more than 1.75 million people. For more information, or to donate or volunteer, visit


Habitat for Humanity Egypt is part of HFH International, A nonprofit, non-sectarian housing organization. Founded in 1976, HFH seeks to eliminate poverty housing and homelessness from the world. HFH Egypt aims to contribute to solving the problem of poverty housing through partnerships with all community levels, by providing a decent, healthy and affordable shelter to people in need without discrimination through the provision of a revolving loan fund. To date, HFH Egypt assisted more than 14,000 families to improve their housing in 25 communities, rural and urban, most of which are located in Beni Suef and Minya governorates.