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Much to celebrate -- Habitat for Humanity Int'l 1

Much to celebrate

By Jonathan Reckford


Photo by Ezra Millstein


Every Habitat project is a celebration. As we come together in community to serve families, we celebrate collaboration, hard work and brighter futures. Helping a family create a better life is an act of joy in which so many of you have shared.

During this year, in particular — when we celebrate Habitat’s 35th anniversary — that joy overflows. This fall, we will recognize the 500,000th family served through Habitat partnerships around the world and begin work with the 500,001st.

These are important milestones, and we are exceedingly grateful for the many ways in which God has blessed this ministry. But what we really celebrate is the ever-growing number of individual victories in which families all around the world have partnered with Habitat to improve their housing situations.

For some families, that means laying a concrete floor, which drastically improves health conditions. For others, it means the ability to make much-needed repairs. For still others, it means receiving the keys to a brand new house. It is exciting — and necessary — to be able to offer a variety of housing options that allow us to serve families in the ways that help them most on terms they can afford.

It is overwhelming, as well, to contemplate the millions of people who have played a part in making this possible all around the world. Each milestone we reach only serves to remind us of each occasion in which individuals, churches, businesses, organizations and governments have reached out to help their neighbors in need. Over the years, Habitat World has presented amazing stories of how those acts of compassion have transformed the lives of partner families and of those who gave of themselves to help. For every story we have shared, for every story we tell in these issues and on, we know there are countless more, and we are grateful.

In this issue, you can learn how Habitat affiliates and national organizations have worked together to further our mission. Rather than staunchly guarding geographic boundaries, these affiliates have demonstrated how supporting each other makes us stronger. We also visit Europe and Central Asia to witness examples of how families’ everyday lives are affected by decent housing.

This is a wonderful time, and I am so grateful for all of you who have caught the vision and are helping families have a simple, decent and safe place in which to live. We know even as we celebrate that the need exponentially outpaces our efforts, so we must continue to do more. We ask God’s continued blessings as we look ahead.