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Celebrating World Habitat Day by building big in Romania

September 10, 2009

BRATISLAVA, SLOVAKIA (September 7, 2009) – Over 250 volunteers, local and international, will gather in Romania on October 5th for the weeklong build to complete 10 homes in Beius, Bihor County.

The Big Build starts on October 5th, designated by the United Nations as annual World Habitat Day to call for the recognition of the state of human settlements and the basic need for adequate shelter for all. Habitat for Humanity’s build in Beius marks the observance throughout the week to accommodate various groups of volunteers who will work on the construction of homes for orphans.

During this year’s Big Build the UK Ambassador to Romania Mr. Robin Barnett will work with the volunteer team from the UK embassy along the future homeowners and other volunteers.

The idea of having this build started as a way of celebrating 10 years of partnership between Habitat for Humanity Romania and Habitat for Humanity Northern Ireland, which has sent hundreds of volunteers to help Romanians families living in poverty housing.

Big Build volunteers, over 200 of them coming from Northern Ireland, will send a powerful message that providing a solution to poverty housing is a worldwide problem. They will do it by offering a helping hand up to those in need of decent, safe and affordable homes.

The houses will be dedicated to orphans, raised in the crumbling state institutions of the communist era and amid the horrors of the post-communist orphanage system. Since being thrown out on the streets at 18, without decent education or job skills, they were marginalized by communities. For years this youth has been living in crammed single-room apartments without decency and respect that comes with a clean and safe home. Some of these young people have started their own families, creating an even bigger housing need.

“I was abandoned by my parents and I grew up in an orphanage in Beius. At the age of 16 was hired at a local clothing factory. Because of my medical problems, I had no money for a room of my own. I dream of having my own family and my own home,” says Irina Farkas, future homeowner to benefit from the Big Build.

By October 9th, all 10 homes will be finished and future homeowners will receive keys to their new homes and lives.

About Habitat for Humanity
Habitat for Humanity International is a global charity dedicated to the cause of eliminating poverty housing. Since its foundation in 1976, Habitat has built and renovated more than 300,000 houses worldwide, providing simple, decent and affordable shelter for 1.5 million people.

In Europe and Central Asia Habitat for Humanity International works in 20 countries, building and repairing houses, offering housing microfinance services, improving water and sanitation, working on disaster response and advocating for affordable housing, all with families in need. In this region, Habitat has served more than 8,000 families together with volunteers and homeowners. Find out more at www.habitateurope.org