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Habitat for Humanity international board adds France to worldwide work

SKOPJE, MACEDONIA (October 27, 2008) – Habitat for Humanity International’s board of directors added France to the list of nearly 90 countries in which the nonprofit organization conducts activities to help eliminate substandard housing throughout the world.

The board cited Habitat for Humanity’s growing operations in the country as the basis for officially recognizing the national program.

“Habitat for Humanity has a history of going where it is invited and where people and organizations show a strong commitment to joining our movement for simple, decent housing for all,” said Jonathan Reckford, Habitat for Humanity International’s CEO. “We’ve been heartened to see more and more supporters in France getting involved in our international work.”

For the past seven years, schools, churches and corporations in Paris and Lille have sent teams of volunteers to help build homes with low-income families in other parts of the world under Habitat’s Global Village program. Also, several French corporations and worldwide business units operating in the country have recently partnered with Habitat for Humanity to support efforts to exponentially increase the number of families it serves globally.

In December 2006, Habitat for Humanity also signed an agreement to work with the French organization Habitat et Humanisme, which has helped 9,000 families in 47 communities throughout France with housing and other basic needs. Habitat for Humanity assists in upgrading, repairing and improving the energy efficiency of properties Habitat et Humanisme manages for families in need.

“While the people and businesses of France have been working with Habitat for Humanity a number of years, this formal recognition of our presence there will serve to broaden the opportunities for more supporters to get involved in our mission to stamp out poverty housing wherever it exists,” said Don Haszczyn, area vice president of Habitat for Humanity Europe and Central Asia.

Haszczyn said Habitat for Humanity will focus on mobilizing more volunteers, funds and other resources from France to help families in need internationally, while also continuing to assist Habitat et Humanisme offer adequate shelter in-country.

Habitat for Humanity Macedonia hosted the international board meeting from October 22–24. The board typically meets as a whole three times a year at various sites throughout the world.

About Habitat for Humanity
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 nearly 300,000 houses worldwide, providing simple, decent and affordable shelter for 1.5 million people.

In Europe and Central Asia Habitat for Humanity International works in 19 countries, building and repairing houses, offering housing microfinance services, improving water and sanitation, working on disaster response and advocating for affordable housing—all with families in need of a home. In this region, Habitat has served more than 4,600 families together with volunteers and homeowners. Find out more at www.habitateurope.org.