Habitat for Humanity Great Britain
Habitat for Humanity started work in Britain in 1993, but it was registered as a charity two years later. Since then, Habitat Great Britain has had a series of successes in both international development and its domestic building program.
How Habitat for Humanity works in Great Britain
Habitat Great Britain supports international projects through assisting with project design, raising funds and securing grants, as well as through monitoring and evaluation. It also runs a volunteer program as a means of raising the profile of poverty housing and cultivating activists for the right to decent housing. In addition to that, it runs local projects for people in need of decent homes in England. Habitat for Humanity Great Britain also works to advocate for decent housing on behalf of individuals, families and communities struggling with housing poverty.
Habitat for Humanity Great Britain supports a range of projects and programs at home and overseas, both financially and technically. It is currently supporting projects in Cambodia through a grant from the Elton John AIDS Foundation (providing shelter for people affected by HIV/AIDS), and advocacy projects in Vietnam, Bolivia and Brazil through grants from the DfID Civil Society Challenge Fund. Other examples include a range of orphans and vulnerable children shelter projects across sub-Saharan Africa and Asia, disaster mitigation projects in the Caribbean and Bangladesh, and post-disaster reconstruction, currently focused on the Haiti earthquake response.
Local building programs
The program in Great Britain divides into four categories addressing a spectrum of local housing problems. These are: refurbishing homeless/emergency shelters; developing social housing schemes for rent or shared ownership; renovating empty or derelict homes; and providing training and development opportunities on site. In November 2010 Habitat Great Britain began a 14-month project in Banbury to build 10 1-bed maisonettes and to involve around 20 young people in the construction work.
Habitat for Humanity Great Britain has a strong Global Village program. Since 2001 it has sent more than 5000 volunteers in at least 385 teams. British volunteers have been to Argentina, Armenia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Bulgaria, Malawi and many other countries where Habitat for Humanity works.
Habitat Great Britain’s corporate supporters come from the construction, architectural and financial sectors. Corporate volunteering, both domestic and international, is increasingly popular, as it breaks down communication barriers in the workplace and encourages teamwork. Habitat for Humanity Great Britain has successfully developed Hope Challenge, a unique fundraising event that attracts teams of staff and involves building and sleeping out in a shelter. It also offers learning and development based modules delivered at company offices or on a build site.
Meet a Habitat family
Hleziphi is the mother and grandmother of the family of eight dependents in a remote neighborhood outside Durban, South Africa. The family all lived in a small hut. Hleziphi had to sleep outside in all weather conditions to make room for her children. That exacerbated her respiratory problems, including bad asthma. Habitat volunteer Peter Smith flew with a team of volunteers from Great Britain to a site outside Durban. There, he and the team worked with the partner family to create a safe, decent home to replace their tiny, crumbling shack.
What did the corporate volunteers say
Population: More than 60 million
Find more country facts on:
CIA The World Factbook – Great Britain
Funds raised: More than 30 million British pounds
Number of volunteer teams sent: Close to 500