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President Carter Announces Plans for 2003 Work Project in Alabama and Georgia

Lowe’s and Whirlpool to be ‘Premier Sponsors’

AMERICUS, Ga., Feb. 11, 2003 – Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter today detailed plans about the upcoming Jimmy Carter Work Project (JCWP) 2003 in Anniston, Ala., LaGrange and Valdosta, Ga. Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI) announced that Lowe’s Companies Inc. and Whirlpool Corp. have joined forces to become the “Premier Sponsors” for the JCWP 2003, uniting the major retailer and manufacturer in the nonprofit homebuilder’s mission to end substandard housing around the world.

During Carter’s annual weeklong build, Habitat for Humanity’s most distinguished volunteer will help build more than 100 houses alongside volunteers and homeowners at three sites in Alabama and Georgia June 8-13. The JCWP 2003 will mark the 20th year in which President Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, have built in partnership with families in need of simple, decent housing. Since 1984, the Carters have personally worked on homes that house more than 1,000 people around the world in destinations such as Los Angeles, New York City, Houston, Miami, Hungary, The Philippines, South Korea and South Africa.

“We have become small players in an exciting global effort to alleviate the curse of homelessness,” said President Carter, who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, Norway, Dec. 10, 2002, as recognition for his lifelong humanitarian efforts to prevent and resolve conflicts, enhance freedom and democracy, and improve health as chairman of The Carter Center in Atlanta. “Habitat for Humanity has successfully removed the stigma of charity by substituting it with a sense of partnership. The people who will live in the homes work side-by-side with the volunteers, so they feel very much that they are on an equal level.”

Introducing the significant new JCWP 2003 partnership between Lowe’s and Whirlpool, HFHI announced that the premier sponsors will help build better communities by raising hammers and awareness during advance celebratory builds designed to spread the spirit of the JCWP and highlight the need for safe, affordable housing for families around the country.

“The partnership between Whirlpool and Lowe’s is a fantastic opportunity for our two companies to contribute our combined strength to building adequate, safe housing with communities in need,” said Robert Tillman, Lowe’s CEO and chairman of the board. “Our two companies are united in the goal of inspiring hope and building lives–one home at a time–through this dynamic partnership with Habitat for Humanity International.”

“We know that the best way to truly understand Habitat for Humanity’s important mission is to experience it first hand–to participate in a local build, to meet families who have benefited from the program and to see what the Jimmy Carter Work Project is all about,” said David Whitwam, Whirlpool CEO and chairman of the board. “We are thrilled to have teamed up with Lowe’s to make it possible for Americans around the country to see what Habitat for Humanity is all about, to help make the JCWP a reality and to help families in need achieve the dream of homeownership.”

This year’s JCWP highlights Habitat for Humanity’s 21st Century Challenge, which calls on cities around the United States to commit to eliminating substandard housing from their communities within 20 years. By shifting their grass-roots efforts from “one house, one family at a time” to focus on building a legacy of better housing for the entire community, Anniston, LaGrange and Valdosta will serve as models of the 21st Century Challenge program for other cities around the country. To date, more than 100 cities are in one stage or another of accepting the 21st Century Challenge. In connection with the builds in Anniston, Ala., and LaGrange and Valdosta, Ga., five other cities around the country will build simultaneously as a part of the 21st Century Challenge.

“We are taking Habitat’s mission to a new and higher level with this year’s Jimmy Carter Work Project. We want to dramatize the huge need for adequate housing and the viable solution of the 21st Century Challenge,” said Millard Fuller, HFHI’s founder and president. “We have selected these three communities for this year’s Jimmy Carter Work Project because they are among the first U.S. cities to formally commit to ridding their neighborhoods of substandard housing by accepting the 21st Century Challenge.”

More than 3,000 volunteers from around the world are expected to join former U.S. President Carter as he builds in Anniston, LaGrange and Valdosta June 8-13. The registration fee is $400 ($275 for students) plus travel expenses. The fee includes food, lodging and ground transportation. For more information on how to register for or donate to the JCWP 2003, log onto http://www.habitat.org/jcwp/2003/

Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical Christian ministry dedicated to eliminating poverty housing. Founded by Millard Fuller, along with his wife, Linda, Habitat for Humanity International and its affiliates in more than 3,000 communities in 87 nations have built and sold more than 125,000 homes to partner families with no-profit, zero-interest mortgages. For more information about Habitat for Humanity International, log onto www.habitat.org.

Premier Sponsors for the Jimmy Carter Work Project 2003

With 2001 sales of $22.1 billion, Lowe’s Companies Inc. (NYSE: LOW) is a Fortune 100 company that serves more than seven million customers a week at more than 860 home improvement stores in 44 states. The 14th largest retailer in the nation, Wilkesboro, NC-based Lowe’s is the second-largest home improvement retailer in the world. Additional information about the company can be found on the Internet at www.lowes.com.

Whirlpool Corporation is the world’s leading manufacturer and marketer of major home appliances, with annual sales of $10.3 billion, 65,000 employees, and nearly 50 manufacturing and technology research centers around the globe. The company markets Whirlpool, KitchenAid, Brastemp, Bauknecht, Consul and other major brand names to consumers in more than 170 countries. Additional information about the company can be found on the Internet at www.whirlpool.com.