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Fun-raising for fund-raising


Students from the American International School of Vienna.


Poster for the Habitat Picnic day in the Park which sold 900 tickets.

Volunteering offers a unique challenge, allowing people the privilege of working with those in need. Habitat volunteers rise to this challenge year after year, with yet more committed groups already joining Habitat for 2012 with the mission of building future homes.

Volunteer builds come with a price; volunteers have to contribute with donations and cover their costs. Fundraising is thus a vital part of the experience, one which earns a place on a build, gains valuable skills, employers love and of course it makes the adventure affordable to those who would not be able to pay from their pocket. Fundraising turns volunteers into Habitat partners, donors and advocates as opposed to just sources of labor or money.

Fall and winter are the busiest fundraising season in preparations for volunteer trips which follow in the spring and summer. The creativity and innovation of Habitat supporters is unbound, employing all five senses, culture and sports, fun, teambuilding, learning and knowledge sharing, skills development, business spirit, personal testimonies and many more.

Last year Habitat in Europe and Central Asia announced a fundraising contest among the volunteer groups in Europe and Middle East. The purpose was to motivate the volunteers as well as to recognize the efforts Habitat advocates were making in their communities. Inspiring success stories identified the best fundraisers in the following categories:

• The largest donation raised at one fundraising event: Dhahran High School (Walk-a-thon with $13,871.46 raised).

• The largest number of donors at an event: American Community School in Abu Dhabi (Habitat Picnic day in the Park – 900 tickets sold).

• The most impactful fundraising event: American Community School in Abu Dhabi (70 volunteers working on 9 houses in India and Kenya).

• The most people involved in an event: American International School of Vienna (200 volunteers helped organize five fundraising events: School Spirit Sweats, Sleigh Rides, Halloween, Easter Egg Hunt, Camelback Water Bottles).

• The most innovative fundraising event: Craig Cregeen’s team from Isle of Man (Fundraising Night for Habitat including quiz, head shaving, body wax, raffle and a concert).

The Grand Prize winners were Dhahran High School and American Community School in Abu Dhabi with the highest donation, participation and impact through their Habitat partnership. Both schools enabled a record number of 137 students and teachers to go and serve families in need in Romania, Kenya and Cambodia. As one volunteer noted, “the fun started with fundraising … but materialized as we developed the sense of responsibility and friendship with the local community, especially the children”.

Share with us your fundraising stories and help inspire others at

What is next?
Habitat wants people not only to read about poverty housing but to do something to fight it. You can support Habitat’s work in Europe Middle East and Africa in a number of ways. Here are some examples:

• Visit our U.S. Dollar donation page to support projects in Europe Middle East and Africa.
• Visit our Euro donation page to support projects in EuropeMiddle East and Africa.
• Go to country profile pages to learn about other programs in this region.

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