Habitat for Humanity's Global Village & Discovery Center Draws Stellar Responses
AMERICUS, Ga., July 21, 2003--Since its opening more than one month ago, Habitat for Humanity International's Global Village & Discovery Center has received positive responses from visitors and inspired some to become involved in Habitat's work, according to Dick Kuegeman, director of the Village.
Kuegeman reports, "One of the first guests to visit our Global Village, upon completion of the tour, pledged to build a Habitat house every year for the rest of his life."
Kuegeman also tells a story about a family who walked through the "Living in Poverty" section and a ten-year-old son asking the mother if people actually lived in shacks like those on display. She responded with a regretful, but truthful, yes. After a second trip through the exhibit, her five-year-old son asked, "But babies don’t live here, right?" She said the visit had such a profound effect on her family, and she would begin volunteering four hours every week with her local Habitat affiliate.
"The impact and the learning that is happening on every age and on every socio-economic background has been really profound," said Kuegeman.
The Global Village & Discovery Center attraction features:
• Five guest areas, including a Visitor Welcome Center, a Marketplace with Theater, a "Living in Poverty" exhibit, the Global Village of 15 completed houses and the Experience area where families can learn how to make house bricks and tiles
• Hosts and guides who describe the lives and customs of families around the world and re-create scenes with guests
• Opportunities for visitors to plan a Global Village volunteer vacation to one of 80 countries
Within 20 miles of the Global Village are President Jimmy Carter's home and museum in Plains and the Andersonville National Monument. The SAM Shortline train travels a route from Cordele to Archery, Ga.
Founded by Millard Fuller and his wife, Linda, in 1976, Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical Christian ministry dedicated to eliminating poverty housing. With its affiliates in 3,000-plus communities in 89 nations, Habitat has built more than 150,000 homes with partner families with no-profit, zero-interest mortgages.
The new Global Village & Discovery Center attraction is funded separately from the home-building mission through designated gifts and contributions.
The Global Village & Discovery Center at 601 W. Church St. is open from 9 a.m. to dusk Monday through Saturday and from 1 p.m. to dusk on Sunday. Admission is by suggested donation of $5 for adults, $3 for students 6 and older and $4 for seniors. Special arrangements are available for groups and annual memberships. No donation is suggested for children under age 6. For more information, call 1-866-924-5823 or visit http://www.habitat.org/ .
Note To Editors: Additional video footage and photos available upon request.