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Habitat for Humanity Africa and the Middle East to celebrate the completion of its 50,000th house

PRETORIA, South Africa (March 25, 2008) – On March 27, Habitat for Humanity Africa and the Middle East will celebrate the completion of the 50,000th house in the region. The event also will coincide with a second milestone, as Habitat for Humanity Egypt will celebrate the completion of its 10,000th house.

In recognition of these two major achievements, a one-day event will take place in Al Minia, Egypt. The event will be attended by national, regional and international Habitat for Humanity staff and supporters, as well as community leaders, government officials including the Minia governor, heads of city councils in Egypt, and homeowners.

“This celebration will be a chance for us to honor our partners and donors who have worked with us earnestly throughout the 19 years. My hope is that through this event, we can look forward to working together in serving more families in need of shelter for many more years to come,” says Yousry Makar, national director for Habitat for Humanity Egypt.

The various Habitat for Humanity programs within the region have found innovative ways to address the unique shelter needs of communities. For example, successful initiatives provide housing for children orphaned by HIV/AIDS as well as for their caregivers. In Lebanon, when sectarian conflict destroyed the shelter of many, Habitat for Humanity provided disaster reconstruction to affected families. The country programs also address the challenges faced by both the rural and urban poor, and refugees and internally displaced persons.

Over the course of its work, Habitat for Humanity Africa and the Middle East has helped provide decent, affordable housing to 50,000 families. In building homes, Habitat for Humanity, together with homeowners and community members, has also helped build hope. Bakgori Letlole, a Habitat homeowner in Botswana, described the feeling he got from his new home: “When you have adequate accommodations, you are happy. I look forward to staying in my Habitat house with my children, happily.”

About Habitat for Humanity Africa and the Middle East
Habitat for Humanity International has been working to build decent, affordable housing throughout the Africa and the Middle East region since the first house was built in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 1979. Today, Habitat for Humanity Africa and the Middle East works in 22 countries throughout the region.

About Habitat for Humanity Egypt
Habitat for Humanity Egypt (HFHE) was founded in 1989, and has constructed or renovated houses that have turned despair into hope for thousands of families in 15 communities who were living in substandard housing.

HFHE partners with the homeowners themselves and with other NGOs and community development associations to achieve its goal. By building on their established knowledge and insight into the community and working at the grassroots level, HFHE has experienced tremendous results over recent years and expects the rapid growth to continue.

About Habitat for Humanity International
Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical Christian ministry that welcomes to its work all people dedicated to the cause of eliminating poverty housing. Since its founding in 1976, Habitat has built more than 250,000 houses worldwide, providing simple, decent and affordable shelter for more than 1 million people. For more information, visit www.habitat.org.