September 7th, 2011
Pilot Program To Benefit Low-Income Homeowners In Disaster Prone Areas Of The Philippines, Thailand And Vietnam
BANGKOK, 7th September 2011: Citi announced today a US$1 million commitment from the Citi Foundation to partner with Habitat for Humanity in launching an innovative three-year multi-country microsavings and financial education initiative.
The Citi-Habitat Home Improvement Microsavings Program will target communities living in substandard housing in the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam that are regularly exposed to natural disasters such as flooding and typhoons. By providing savings products, financial education and construction technical assistance, the program aims to help 3,000 low-income homeowners save a total of US$2 million to strengthen their homes against disasters.
Shirish Apte, CEO, Citi Asia Pacific said, “There are an increasing number of natural disasters in this region, and although Citi has a proud history of disaster response, we also understand the importance of disaster risk reduction. We are very pleased to extend our long-standing partnership with Habitat for Humanity and to be able to demonstrate Citi’s commitment to financial inclusion by developing a scalable savings model for poor communities in the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam that are especially vulnerable to disasters.”
“We are extremely grateful for this generous donation and the beneficial long-term partnership between Citi and Habitat for Humanity. This funding will enable us to work with savings institutions and provide housing support for the benefit of low-income families to improve their homes. Citi’s grant will also allow Habitat to conduct research on savings for home improvement that will further benefit families across the Asia-Pacific region”, said Patrick McAllister, Habitat for Humanity International’s Asia-Pacific housing finance director.
“At Citi, our goal is to increase the supply of financial products and services that improve and accelerate the financial inclusion of low-income individuals,” said Pamela Flaherty, Citi Foundation President and CEO. “Through our twelve year partnership with Habitat for Humanity, they have proven to be a leader in providing housing and testing innovative solutions. We are confident that with Citi’s continued support, Habitat for Humanity will implement and replicate even more impactful financial inclusion efforts.”
Citi and the Citi Foundation have supported Habitat for Humanity since 1999, providing a total of US$32 million to advance Habitat’s mission of providing affordable homes for low-income families.
In the Asia Pacific region, after the Indian Ocean tsunami, Citi worked with Habitat for Humanity on disaster rebuilding projects in Indonesia and Sri Lanka. Other current Citi-funded programs include an annual home build in South Korea that incorporates a financial education component; and a recently-launched financial education program for low-income homeowners in Malaysia.
Citi, the leading global financial services company, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management.
About the Citi Foundation
The Citi Foundation is committed to the economic empowerment and financial inclusion of individuals and families, particularly those in need, in the communities where we work so that they can improve their standard of living. Globally, the Citi Foundation targets its strategic giving to priority focus areas: Microfinance, Enterprise Development, Youth Education and Livelihoods, and Financial Capability and Asset Building. The Citi Foundation works with its partners in Microfinance and Enterprise Development to support environmental programs and innovations. Additional information can be found at www.citifoundation.com .