- Individuals served in FY19: 1,340*
* Through repairs
- Volunteers engaged in FY19: 1,996
- Population: 7.5 million
- Life expectancy: 88.1 years
- Unemployment rate: 3.3%
- Population living below poverty line: 20.4%
Source: Hong Kong Census and Statistics Department
Habitat for Humanity in Hong Kong
Government data showed one in five people in Hong Kong lived below the poverty line at the end of 2018. Yet, the city is home to the world’s second largest billionaire population according to Forbes. For the tenth year running, Hong Kong was the least affordable housing market in 2019, based on a Demographia study. About 210,000 low-income individuals in Hong Kong are reportedly living in cramped 93,000 sub-divided units, rental rooms or cubicles.
Habitat for Humanity Hong Kong is dedicated to raising awareness and funds to meet the needs for decent, affordable housing for families in the Asia-Pacific region including mainland China. It also serves as a fundraising hub to support housing programs across the region. Multiple grants from the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government Disaster Relief Fund have supported Habitat’s responses to 11 disasters regionally.
How Habitat addresses the need in Hong Kong
Project Home Works
Volunteers from corporations, churches, clubs, associations, schools and universities lend their support to Habitat Hong Kong’s flagship program Project Home Works. They work with licensed contractors to repair or renovate the homes of low-income households including older people, single parents and people with disabilities. These vulnerable families usually live in public rental housing and receive government social assistance.
Raising funds for post-disaster reconstruction
Habitat Hong Kong serves as a fundraising hub for the Asia-Pacific region and beyond. Grants from the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Disaster Relief Fund have enabled Habitat to respond to multiple natural disasters. These included the distribution of kits for emergency shelter, household needs, and water, sanitation and hygiene following flooding in Vietnam (2016), Nepal (2017) and India (2017, 2018, 2019); cyclones in India (2019), and Fiji and Bangladesh (2016); earthquakes in Nepal (2015) and mainland China’s Sichuan province (2013); and Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines (2014).
Engaging with volunteers
For the financial year ended June 30, 2019, a total of 365 volunteers from Hong Kong took part in Habitat’s Global Village builds in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond. Within Hong Kong, Habitat engaged 1,996 student, public and corporate volunteers through Project Home Works and Project School Works. These volunteers helped to repair the homes of 268 low-income households comprising older persons or disadvantaged groups as well as clean and upgrade 12 schools for underprivileged students. Through the annual Habitat Young Leaders Build campaign, Hong Kong’s youth volunteers advocate, raise funds and partner with rural families to build homes in mainland China. To celebrate International Women’s Day in 2019, Habitat Hong Kong held a month-long Women Build. Volunteers partnered with established local charities Mother’s Choice and Pathfinders to improve living conditions by renovating shelters for women, teenagers and children.