GMAC Financial Services Partner With Families In Need To Build Homes in 17 States
AMERICUS, Ga., Nov. 18, 2002--Habitat for Humanity International and GMAC Financial Services are partnering to build affordable homes for families in need with an agreement that formalizes an initiative that already this year has resulted in houses built in 17 states and four Canadian provinces.
"We applaud efforts by corporations to reach out to families who need, as a minimum, a safe, decent place to live," said Millard Fuller, founder and president of Habitat for Humanity International. "GMAC is giving its employees the opportunity to help others by helping Habitat for Humanity end poverty housing around the world."
"This not only makes good community sense to us, but good business sense as well," says James E. Farmer, vice president, GMAC Merchandising, Advertising and Communications, of the agreement that initially encompasses more than three dozen house builds. "As we build houses with families in need, we provide a foundation where the key aspects of our business-motor-vehicle financing, insurance needs, mortgages-can take root while offering our employee volunteers a tremendous opportunity to give back to their own communities."
An integral part of the Habitat for Humanity experience is that Habitat homeowners put in "sweat equity" at the work site, in most cases working side by side with the volunteers. "When you see the faces of the family you are helping, along with your team of employee volunteers, it gives you a real lift," adds Farmer, who oversaw a GMAC build south of Miami earlier this year.
GMAC, its parent company GM, and its subsidiaries, GMAC Mortgage, GMAC Residential Funding Corporation, GMAC Bank, GMAC Home Services, GMAC Insurance, Nuvell, GMACRE, and GMAC Commercial Mortgage have participated in both U.S. and Canadian Habitat builds in 2002. Sites in the U.S. were in Phoenix; Little Rock, Ark.; Los Angeles, Petaluma and San Diego, Calif.; Hartford, Conn.; Wilmington, Del.; Boca Raton, Jacksonville, Miami and Orlando, Fla.; Waterloo, Iowa; Annapolis, Md.; Pontiac, Mich.; Minneapolis;
Burlington County, N.J.; Rochester, N.Y.; Charlotte and Winston-Salem, N.C.; Columbus, Ohio; Bucks County, Delaware Valley, Norristown and Walnut Grove, Calif.; Dallas; and Milwaukee. Sites in Canada were in Edmonton, Alberta; Halifax, Nova Scotia; Burlington, Ontario; and Montreal, Quebec.
GMAC regularly works in conjunction with GM in supporting Habitat for Humanity builds such as townhouses built in Gliwice, Poland in 2000 and a "Spouses of the Executive Branch" build in metropolitan Washington, D.C., in September.
For more information about Habitat for Humanity International, go to www.habitat.org .
GMAC, a subsidiary of GM since 1919, is a diverse organization which, besides motor vehicle financing, includes mortgages, real estate services, insurance needs and commercial financing. "When we realized that many of our offices have been involved with Habitat for Humanity for nearly a decade, we decided to formalize our commitment with this agreement," Farmer says. "We look at it as the start of a beautiful friendship."
Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical Christian ministry dedicated to eliminating poverty housing. Founded by Millard Fuller and his wife, Linda, Habitat for Humanity International and its affiliates in more than 3,000 communities in 83 nations have built and sold more than 125,000 homes to partner families with no-profit, zero-interest mortgages.