Habitat for Humanity of Washington, D.C. Will Co-Host Annual 'Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Work Project' to Kick Off on World Habitat Day in October

Apr 13, 2010, 11:53 ET from Habitat for Humanity of Washington, D.C.

WASHINGTON, April 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Habitat for Humanity of Washington, D.C. will co-host the 27th annual "Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Work Project" that will kick off a week of building, rehabilitating and repairing homes.  Build activities begin in D.C. on World Habitat Day, Oct. 4, as part of a worldwide effort to highlight the need for stable communities and healthy housing.  President and Mrs. Carter will build with DC Habitat on Monday, October 4.

"We are thrilled that the Carters will join us in D.C. on October 4 to help build and repair homes in our new Ivy City development," said Kent Adcock, President of DC Habitat.  "As a result of this effort, at least 10 local families will have better housing conditions in the District."

The Carters will build alongside DC Habitat staff and 200 volunteers in Ivy City, a largely industrial neighborhood in the central portion of Northeast Washington.  Ivy City, one of the area's smallest and least known communities, has faced great challenges and is home to a collection of houses dating back more than one hundred years.

Beginning in summer of 2010, Habitat for Humanity of Washington, D.C. will begin initial construction in the neighborhood.  Plans have been drawn for 13 units and, depending on funding, up to 15 additional units may be constructed.  The total cost of developing all 28 units is close to $6 million.  DC Habitat is one of four developers that were awarded land grants from the District, along with funds from the first round of the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, to produce more than 50 units of mixed income housing in Ivy City.

This year's Habitat for Humanity Carter Work Project is being held in conjunction with the United Nations' World Habitat Day. Annually, on the first Monday of October, people around the world join together to advocate for the need and importance of housing and to exchange ideas.  This year, Habitat will highlight the needs of communities in recovery in the United States and will focus on the critical link between health and housing overseas.  As part of its awareness-raising emphasis, Habitat for Humanity International is expanding its 2010 World Habitat Day into weeklong events.

"Habitat for Humanity and its partners will increase our efforts to help struggling communities both in the United States and around the world so that even more families have an opportunity to live in decent homes," said Jonathan Reckford, CEO of Habitat for Humanity International.  "We are grateful that the Carters and volunteers are joining us in this important work. Whether we are building new houses, or rehabilitating and repairing existing structures, we want to find the best way to make a significant and positive local impact."

To achieve this, Habitat for Humanity's new "Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative" aims to support local Habitat affiliates to serve more families by responding to community needs with an expanded array of products as part of community development that enhances quality of life.  Habitat affiliates and their partners will decide on the work carried out locally, but the initiative's services may include new house construction, rehabilitation of vacant properties (including foreclosed properties), house repairs for existing low-income homeowners, weatherization to make houses more energy-efficient and affordable, and community planning partnerships to ensure more services are available to further stabilize communities.  

"Since Habitat's founding, we have been rehabilitating and repairing homes in our efforts to serve families," said Reckford.  "However, for us to make an even deeper impact on neighborhoods across the country, we want to partner with other groups to improve communities that are facing a number of challenges."  

Along these same lines, Habitat for Humanity's Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Work Project for 27 years has been a catalyst for increasing the work being done in local communities and empowering people to bring hope, stability and housing solutions.

President and Mrs. Carter are Habitat for Humanity's most famous volunteers and give a week of their time each year to help Habitat build, renovate or repair homes and raise awareness about the need for affordable and decent housing.  Similar to Habitat's Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative, the Carters joined Habitat for Humanity in 1984 to help renovate a decaying building in New York City's Lower East Side.  Today, the building is part of a thriving, reinvigorated and dynamic community.  Since that first build, the Carters and thousands of volunteers have worked with Habitat for Humanity across the United States and in Mexico, Canada, Hungary, South Africa, South Korea, India, the Philippines, Thailand, Cambodia, China, Laos and Vietnam.

"Rosalynn and I are pleased to join Habitat for Humanity volunteers in six communities this year to help raise walls on new homes and improve existing housing," said President Carter.  "More than 75 homeowners will realize new or improved housing conditions as a result of this week."

About Habitat for Humanity of Washington, D.C.

Habitat for Humanity of Washington, D.C. believes that everyone deserves a house they want to call home.  That's why we work to eliminate poverty housing and homelessness in the nation's capital by building affordable, energy- and resource-efficient homes for people in need.  DC Habitat builds and rehabilitates homes in order to sell them to families who are ineligible for conventional financing. Visit us at www.dchabitat.org for more information.

About Habitat for Humanity International

Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical Christian ministry that welcomes to its work all people dedicated to the cause of eliminating poverty housing. Since its founding in 1976, Habitat has built, rehabilitated, repaired or improved more than 350,000 houses worldwide, providing simple, decent and affordable shelter for more than 1.75 million people. For more information, or to donate or volunteer, visit www.habitat.org.


Heather Phibbs

Habitat for Humanity of Washington, D.C.

(202) 882-4600, ext. 233



SOURCE Habitat for Humanity of Washington, D.C.