Why is Habitat Needed?
At Habitat for Humanity we believe that home ownership is a needed and demonstrable key to breaking the cycle of intergenerational poverty. Our work moves forward the idea that when we work together on behalf of the neediest amongst us we do honor to those gifts we have been given, those gifts that we can share and the spirit through which we find community .
Who we serve–
The Washington State Legislature finds that one of the most dramatic housing needs is that of persons needing special housing-related services, such as the mentally ill, recovering alcoholics, frail elderly persons, and families with members who have disabilities, and single parents.
Did you know that Thurston County has the highest percentage of families headed by single parent mothers in the state? Our partner families reflect that reality, with approximately 50% of our families headed by strong single women. And we have partnered with families who have disabilities affecting parents as well as children.
The benefits of homeownership are clear –
most importantly, few of these families would ever have the opportunity to own their own home without this program. Between their own sweat equity and that of hundreds of volunteers each year, it is possible to build a modest but well constructed home that is safe, secure, and affordable for the very low to low income families who are our neighbors.
But it isn’t just families who benefit from a supply of affordable housing. The entire community benefits when people who work in that community, including factory workers, service workers, and restaurant and retail employees, can afford to live there. If they can’t, they commute greater distances, causing pollution and transportation problems. In addition, the ability to attract and keep businesses and jobs is directly linked to the availability of affordable housing for employees. All of us pay more for healthcare and car insurance when people can’t afford it because their high cost of housing consumes too much of their income.
Some important facts:
- The stability of homeownership directly impacts the ability of children to perform better in school.
- Homeowners have a greater stake in their community and are more likely to be involved in the democratic process.
- Children of homeowners earn more and are less likely to rely on assistance.
- Children of homeowners are more likely to be homeowners themselves.