Former President Bush Honors Habitat for Humanity Founders With Points of Light “Extra Mile” Award
AMERICUS, GA., Nov. 25, 2002 – They gave away their million-dollar fortune to help the poor and then went on to establish Habitat for Humanity International, building more than 125,000 homes with people in need. On Dec. 2 former U.S. President George H.W. Bush will honor Habitat for Humanity International founders, Millard and Linda Fuller, as the Points of Light Foundation’s “The Extra Mile” honorees.
A ceremony is scheduled for the Ocean Reef Club in Key Largo, Fla., during which Points of Light Foundation officials will unveil the Fullers’ “The Extra Mile” bronze medallion. The honor is part of The Extra Mile-Points of Light Foundation Volunteer Pathway in Washington, D.C. More than 70 people will be honored with medallions along the walkway, which stretches from The Treasury Building eastward on G Street. Some of the first recipients of the honor were Edgar J. Helms, founder of Goodwill Industries, Clara Barton, who began the American Red Cross, Martin Luther King, Jr., the leader of the Civil Rights Movement, and Susan B. Anthony, an early American patriot. Along with the Fullers, Eunice Kennedy Shriver will also be honored in Key Largo for her work in founding the Special Olympics. The Fullers and Mrs. Shriver are the only living recipients of the award.
The medallions are hand-sculpted in bronze, measure 42 inches in diameter, and weigh 150 pounds. The Fuller’s medallion features a likeness of the couple and a description of their accomplishments, along with a quotation from Millard Fuller.
“Through their pioneering vision, Millard and Linda Fuller and Eunice Kennedy Shriver have made their dreams of a better world come true. Their desire to go the extra mile to help others has made each more than one of a thousand points of light, it has made each of them one of just a handful of brightly burning stars,” said George Bush, 41st President of the United States.
“I am deeply honored to receive this award with Linda,” Fuller said. “In recognizing our accomplishments, the Points of Light Foundation is also acknowledging the millions of Habitat for Humanity volunteers who have helped build homes, the homeowners whose lives have been changed through this remarkable ‘faith in action’ ministry, and all the other people around the world who have made Habitat what it is today.”
The Points of Light Foundation & Volunteer Center National Network engages and mobilizes millions of volunteers who are helping to solve serious social problems in thousands of communities. Through a variety of programs and services, the Foundation encourages people from all walks of life-corporations, faith-based organizations, low-income communities, families, youth and older adults-to volunteer. Call 1-800-VOLUNTEER, or visit www.1800volunteer.org  to be connected to a local volunteer center and learn more about the variety of volunteer opportunities within your own community.
Millard Fuller’s business expertise and entrepreneurial drive made him a millionaire by age 29. Then, after a rededication of his life to family and to following God’s path, Millard and Linda Fuller decided to sell their possessions and give the money to the poor. Following missionary work in Africa, the Fullers founded Habitat for Humanity in Americus, Georgia. Millard Fuller has written several books about his work with Habitat for Humanity and has received numerous achievement awards and more than 40 honorary doctorate degrees for his outstanding leadership toward meeting the goal of eliminating poverty housing worldwide.
For more information about Habitat for Humanity International, log on to www.habitat.org . Digital photos may be e-mailed upon request.
Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical Christian ministry dedicated to eliminating poverty housing. Founded in 1976 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. Worth Magazine and the Chronicle of Philanthropy consistently rate Habitat for Humanity International one of the top nonprofit organizations in the world.