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Clinton, Gore Visit Habitat Sites on Two Continents

Clinton, Gore Visit Habitat Sites on Two Continents

Kasane, Botswana - March, 31 1998 - Habitat for Humanity Kasane homeowners Simon and Ruth Mogwerane had an unexpected visit Tuesday morning from U.S. President and Mrs. Bill Clinton.

The Clintons made a special, unscheduled visit to the Kasane site of Habitat for Humanity Botswana, a nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating poverty housing in Botswana affiliated with Habitat for Humanity International.

“I am a great supporter of Habitat for Humanity’s work,” Clinton said, adding that he and First Lady Hillary Clinton have worked on several Habitat for Humanity homes in America.

The Mogweranes moved into their new Habitat home last year. Simon, his wife and four children rented a one-room house in Kasane for P85 ($21) per month while he waited to get a plot of land through the government’s Self Help Housing Association. He works as a gatekeeper for the government transportation department earning about P380 ($95) per month.

After getting his plot, Simon says he did not have enough money to buy materials to build. “I prayed to God to help, and He answered my prayers with Habitat.” The family is paying off the no-interest mortgage of P4887.63 ($1,221) over ten years at the rate of P40 ($10) per month.

That same day, in Washington, D.C., Vice President Al Gore celebrated his 50th birthday by volunteering with D.C. Habitat for Humanity. Gore was joined by his wife, Tipper, and several staff members and AmeriCorps volunteers, hammering up drywall and windows and removing rocks from what will be the house’s lawn.