Habitat International: Fact Sheet

Habitat for Humanity fact sheet (frequently asked questions)

What is Habitat for Humanity International?

  • A nonprofit, ecumenical Christian housing ministry.
  • Founded in 1976 by Millard Fuller and his wife, Linda.
  • Seeking to eliminate poverty housing and homelessness from the world and to make decent shelter a matter of conscience and action.
  • Inviting people of all backgrounds, races and religions to build houses together in partnership with families in need.
  • Today, we have helped build over 500,000 decent, affordable houses and served more than 2 million people around the world.

Habitat volunteers and homeowners build side-by-side in New Orleans, Louisiana

How does it work?

  • Through volunteer labor and donations of money and materials, Habitat builds and rehabilitates simple, decent houses alongside our homeowner partner families.
  • In addition to a down payment and monthly mortgage payments, homeowners invest hundreds of hours of their own labor into building their Habitat house and the houses of others.
  • Habitat houses are sold to partner families at no profit and financed with affordable loans.
  • The homeowners’ monthly mortgage payments are used to build still more Habitat houses.

How are partner families selected?

  • Families in need of decent shelter apply to local Habitat affiliates.
  • The affiliate’s family selection committee chooses homeowners based on their level of need, their willingness to become partners in the program and their ability to repay the loan.
  • Every affiliate follows a nondiscriminatory policy of family selection.
  • Neither race nor religion is a factor in choosing the families who receive Habitat houses.

What are Habitat affiliates?

  • Community-level Habitat for Humanity offices that act in partnership with and on behalf of Habitat for Humanity International.
  • Each affiliate coordinates all aspects of Habitat home building in its local area.

Where does Habitat for Humanity operate?

  • Worldwide.
  • Our operational headquarters are located in Americus, Georgia and our administrative headquarters are in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

How are donations distributed and used?

  • As designated by the donor.
  • Gifts designated to a specific affiliate or building project are forwarded to that affiliate or project.
  • Undesignated gifts are used where most needed and for administrative expenses.
  • Habitat’s most recent audited financial statement is available online.

Who controls and manages Habitat for Humanity International?

  • An ecumenical, international board of directors.
  • Board members are dedicated volunteers who are deeply concerned about the problems of poverty housing around the world.
  • The Habitat headquarters are operated by an administrative staff, professional and support employees, and volunteers.

How does Habitat work with the government?

  • We ask legislators and housing regulators to increase support for affordable homeownership and eliminate poverty housing.
  • We monitor public policies related to housing, community and international development.
  • We advocate policy choices that increase access to decent, affordable housing for people around the world.
  • We accept government funds as long as they have no conditions that would violate Habitat’s principles or limit its ability to proclaim its Christian identity.

How can I become a volunteer?

How can I get more information?

  • Contact Us.
  • Habitat for Humanity International, 121 Habitat Street, Americus, GA 31709-3498, USA.
  • 800-HABITAT.
  • Email General Questions

(taken from the Habitat For Humanity website)


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