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Growth through partnership with microfinance institutions in Ghana

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Examples of Habitat for Humanity Ghana houses.

Habitat for Humanity Ghana (HFHG) has been intervening in poverty shelter issues for more than 20 years and has gathered substantial homebuilding experience after building more than 5,600 houses.

In February 2006, the U.S. Headquarters of Opportunity International and Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI) signed a global partnership to encourage its field-based organizations to look for ways to partner for increased service to the poor. Using that, HFHG and Opportunity International Ghana (OIG) started exploring ways to partner to address shelter issues in Ghana. OIG has been operating in Ghana for 14 years and provides financial services to low-income populations for micro- and small-enterprise development. In August 2007, both organizations discussed the development of a new housing finance product to existing and new clients of OIG with HFHG supporting these clients with a housing resource center that would provide technical and financial literacy education.

This partnership was kicked off through a market research workshop that was conducted in Accra in February 2008. Twenty employees of both organizations participated including HFHI, HFHG and OIG staff. Attendees learned about the use of Participatory Rapid Appraisal (PRA) techniques to enable HFHG and OIG to conduct market research in Ashanti and Brong Ahafo regions in Ghana. This large-scale market research exercise is being carried out in June-July 2008. Ultimately, a new Housing Finance Product will be implemented through the partnership.