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Credit Suisse bank to work on home construction project for needy Romanians

20 September 2011

Pitesti/Bratislava ( September, 2011) – On Thursday, 18 employees of the Credit Suisse bank are coming to Romania to volunteer for three days on a Habitat home construction site in the village of Oarja, Pitesti. The team consists of employees of Credit Suisse Switzerland from four European countries. They will help build four new homes and will work side by side with the families who are later moving into these homes.

This construction project was developed by Habitat for Humanity to help low-income families in rural areas of Romania improve their living conditions. Many of them live in dilapidated homes without basic conveniences, such as water and sanitation. Small incomes are prohibiting these people from making even basic home improvements.

The new Habitat homes will provide families with 60 square meters of simple and decent space. The houses are constructed from affordable and readily available materials, so they can be assembled by unskilled volunteers and easily maintained by the families. All the houses will be insulated to reduce the families’ energy expenditures - extremely important for these low income families.

All the families who will benefit from the project contribute 1,000 hours of labor on the construction. At the same time, they pay back affordable loans to cover the costs of the house. Families are also asked to take up financial education. Free courses offered by Habitat will allow them to understand the financial arrangement and manage repayments.

The Credit Suisse team that is coming to the construction site will be working on the interior insulation, and install and paint walls. Credit Suisse employees have a strong history of volunteering with Habitat for Humanity to build affordable housing with families in need.

“Since the launch of the Credit Suisse global volunteering partnership with Habitat for Humanity International in 2009, more than 2,000 employees have helped build homes with low-income families providing over 23,000 hours of service”, says Jodie A. Porto, Credit Suisse Americas Foundation.

The focus of the partnership is to engage Credit Suisse employees in local day builds with Habitat for Humanity. Global teams participated in post Tsunami rebuilding in Sri Lanka and India, employees in the United States continue to travel year after year on their own expense and vacation time to help rebuild the Gulf Coast affected by Hurricane Katrina, there are regular volunteer build trips from the Singapore and Hong Kong offices to Indonesia and China, and varied repair and restoration projects in London, UK. The original two year partnership with Habitat was extended this year with a new two-year commitment.

About Credit Suisse AG
Credit Suisse AG is one of the world’s leading financial services providers and is part of the Credit Suisse group of companies. As an integrated bank, Credit Suisse offers clients its combined expertise in the areas of private banking, investment banking and asset management. Credit Suisse provides advisory services, comprehensive solutions and innovative products to companies, institutional clients and high-net-worth private clients globally, as well as to retail clients in Switzerland. Credit Suisse is headquartered in Zurich and operates in over 50 countries worldwide. The group employs approximately 50,700 people. Further information about Credit Suisse can be found at www.credit-suisse.com

About Habitat for Humanity
Habitat for Humanity International is a Christian nonprofit organization dedicated to the cause of eliminating poverty housing. Since its founding in 1976, Habitat has built and renovated more than 400,000 homes worldwide. In Europe and Central Asia, Habitat works in 22 countries with partners, donors and volunteers from the region. For more information, or to donate or volunteer, visit www.habitateurope.org