Learn and Build Experience: locations, dates, costs, application

The 2014 Learn and Build Experience trip application is now closed. 

Learn and Build Experience alumni and international trip details

Albany, Georgia – Learn and Build alumni trip
June 8-14
Flint River Habitat for Humanity 
Alumni participants will stay in Americus, Georgia, home of Habitat for Humanity International headquarters. Habitat for Humanity was founded in 1976 by Millard Fuller. Participation in this alumni trip is an opportunity to immerse oneself into Habitat’s history and the area culture that spurred Fuller’s mission to provide decent housing for all. Participants will interact with HFHI staff and visit locations important to Habitat’s history, including Koinonia Farms and the Global Village and Discovery Center, which features Habitat homes from around the world. Americus is also 10 miles from Plains, Georgia, home of former President Jimmy Carter. The trip will include lots of Southern charm.

Veles, Macedonia  Learn and Build international trip
July 12-21
Habitat for Humanity Macedonia
The city of Veles lies in the heart of Macedonia and is an epicenter of culture, history and tradition. Macedonia will offer an unforgettable look into Eastern European life.

After declaring independence in 1991 from Yugoslavia, Macedonia struggled to enter the global economy and lost many of its public services. This loss has had a significant effect on the availability of affordable housing. The price of housing increased and many average families can no longer afford to own a home. As a consequence of long-lasting instability, Macedonia’s national income dropped substantially. Unemployment has risen significantly, leading to a sharp fall in family incomes and a general rise in poverty levels. Macedonia’s unemployment rate is among the highest in Europe, reaching 36 percent in 2004. The number of people living below the national poverty level has exceeded 25 percent.

Habitat for Humanity of Macedonia was founded in 2004, and offers the working poor, often forgotten in this region, partnership that can help them find decent and affordable housing solution and change lives.

Learn and Build U.S. trips

Milwaukee, Wisconsin
June 22-July 1
Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity
Located on the southwestern shores of Lake Michigan, Milwaukee is the largest city in Wisconsin. Known as “the good land” by Native Americans, Milwaukee has a beautiful lakefront, diverse neighborhoods, friendly Midwestern residents and lots of festivals, including Summerfest.

Milwaukee is one of the most racially segregated cities in the United States. Many central city neighborhoods are in need of revitalization, and roughly one of four Milwaukee renters spends half of their income on housing. To help revitalize these neighborhoods and increase homeownership, Milwaukee Habitat has served more than 600 families through new construction and A Brush with Kindness, a minor rehab and repair program.

Asheville, North Carolina
July 6-15
Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity
Located in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina, Asheville boasts a vibrant downtown, unique restaurants serving locally sourced food, an active art scene and is home to numerous festivals. Buncombe County is mostly rural which provides a variety of outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, white water rafting and climbing. The beautiful setting often overshadows the housing situation in Asheville where even police officers, teachers and firefighters struggle to find decent and affordable homes due to the imbalance between incomes and housing costs.

AAHH was the first Habitat affiliate in North Carolina. The affiliate builds between 13 and 15 houses each year and each one meets North Carolina Green Built standards. Volunteers may work on home repairs or new construction digging foundations, framing, installing windows, doors, and vinyl siding, painting, or landscaping.

Lafayette, Louisiana
July 27-Aug. 5
Lafayette Habitat for Humanity
Lafayette Habitat for Humanity is located in the heart of South Louisiana’s Cajun country, where there is always delicious food to eat and places to explore! The unique cultural scene draws visitors from across the world, with many festivals throughout the year focusing on Cajun hospitality and music. While the oil service industry is a cornerstone of the local economy, the area continues to attract new business from energy, technology, healthcare and retail.
Despite the economic boom, Lafayette Parish has a poverty rate above the national average, ranks seventh in the nation for income inequality, and continues to experience a gap between their poorest and richest residents. Housing costs are exceptionally high causing affordable housing to be in very short supply.

Lafayette Habitat was established in 1992 and the affiliate has completed 93 homes. Over the next year they plan to build 10 to 12 more, including breaking ground on a new subdivision.

Kona, Hawaii
Aug. 3-12
Habitat for Humanity West Hawaii
Kailua-Kona is located on the big island of Hawaii. The north and southern most parts of the island focus on an agriculture economy, while the Kona district is urban and includes major tourist areas. In some regions, financial hardship is coupled with the need to commute long distances from home to available jobs. The median house price in West Hawaii is not affordable to most of the local workforce. Escalating energy costs make it housing financially unsustainable longer term. In the rural areas, nearly 20 percent of the dwellings consist of tents, yurts, lava tubes and cargo containers.

Habitat for Humanity of West Hawaii was formed in 2002. To date, 10 homes have been completed, along with several renovations and repairs as a result of earthquake and tsunami damage. The unique Hawaiian population provides a one-of-a-kind domestic experience.