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Asia’s youths and celebrities support Habitat Youth BUILD 2013 to end poverty housing

Over 10,000 youths to take part in building homes; Bollywood actor John Abraham among celebrities who have pledged support


launch-web-story.jpgMillions of youths to raise awarenss of poverty housing situation in Asia-Pacific.

BANGKOK (Feb. 28, 2013) – Habitat for Humanity today launched its Habitat Youth BUILD 2013 campaign, the second year the event is held after its successful kick-off last year. The annual event is aimed at tapping Asia’s youths to fight poverty housing in Asia-Pacific.

“Living in a decent home helps break the cycle of poverty. By putting their social networks to good use, raising awareness and funds, Asia’s youths can really make a difference to the lives of thousands of people in the region. They did it last year, and they’re doing it again this year – it’s a growing movement of young people saying no to substandard housing,” said Rick Hathaway, Habitat for Humanity vice president for Asia-Pacific.

Youths in nine countries – China, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Nepal, the Philippines, Thailand – will campaign on- and offline over the next two months to garner support for the movement and raise vital funds to tackle poverty housing in the region.

Activities in support of the campaign have been planned across Asia-Pacific over the next two months. They include ‘Raise the roof’, a youth conference in India focused on affordable housing, which will take place on 22 March. Over in the Philippines and Indonesia, Habitat will approach schools to sign up supporters; and in Nepal, Habitat will work with the Ministry for Youth and Sports and partners across the country to galvanize young Nepalese to take part in the movement.

Various celebrities and inspirational youth ambassadors have already pledged their support. They include Bollywood actor John Abraham, Hong Kong pop singer Jade Kwan and renowned young architect Fai Au, actor Matteo Guidicelli, Big Brother winner Slater Young, basketball star Chris Tiu from the Philippines, and Habitat Philippines Youth Council chair Alex Eduque.

Thai pop singer and pianist, Tor Saskit, who volunteered at a build site last year, said: “There is no better feeling than bringing a smile to someone’s face. If we learn to sacrifice personal happiness and instead give to others, especially to those less-fortunate, I believe we can all live rewarding lives.”

Also launched today is an animated video, which Habitat for Humanity national organizations across the region will use to promote Habitat Youth BUILD 2013 and attract new supporters. Watch the video.

To find out more about Habitat Youth BUILD 2013, visit

A regional T-shirt design competition will kick off tomorrow (1 March), with an iPad mini up for grabs for the winning design. Chosen by popular online vote, the selected design will be worn by more than 10,000 young people building homes on 27 April.

To take part in the T-shirt design competition, visit

Habitat Youth BUILD 2013 builds on last year’s success that involved more than one million online supporters and 5,000 people building in five countries on one day. The event raised over US$1 million and helped more than 700 low-income families.

To support Habitat Youth BUILD 2013 and start your own fundraising page, visit