Safe, Affordable Housing for All of Us Should Be a Human Right
A Foreword by Doug Draper at Niagara At Large followed by a Message from Habitat for Humanity Niagara’s CEO, Mark Carl
Posted October 3rd, 2022 on Niagara At Large
Foreword by Doug Draper – Sometime around 25 or more years ago, when I was still working as a reporter for the once-proud St. Catharines Standard, when the Burgoyne family still owned it and before it was gutted by the corporate chain pirates who have been gutting the paper ever since, I was asked by my editors if I would like to join a new body called Habitat for Humanity Niagara in building a home in Welland for a young family in need, then write about it.
I had already herd of Habitat Humanity, a group championed in the United States by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his wife Rosalynn, so I jumped at the chance.
Through that experience, I was moved to meet so many great volunteers, including skilled home builders, building suppliers and host of other others who volunteered, along with one great person who was leading up the Habitat group here at the time- Dick Halverson, a realtor from the Pelham area who cared passionately about providing affordable housing to less fortunate people in our region, and who unfortunately passed away, all too young, in 2017.
When I think about my experience with those good people building that first home in Niagara for Habitat for Humanity and I think about Dick Halverson and his oh so generous heart, I can’t help but think that there are too few people like him in the property selling and building business and too many who are driven by greed at almost any cost to people and our environment.
I also think of all the continued reports in Niagara of out-of-sight housing and apartment rental prices and the epidemic of homeless encampments in our region.
Yet at least, we will have Habitat Niagara and here is a message from its CEO –
A message from Habitat Niagara’s CEO, Mark Carl
The first Monday in October has been declared as World Habitat Day. This came about more than 30 years ago, as the United Nations General Assembly took an important step in promoting the idea that everyone deserves a decent place to live.
World Habitat Day provides an opportunity for us to reflect on the state of our communities and the basic right of all to adequate shelter. It is also intended to raise awareness about the housing issues that people face across Niagara, throughout the country, and around the world.
The theme for this year’s World Habitat Day is “Mind the gap”- making cities and human settlements inclusive, safe and resilient. That’s exactly what we do at Habitat for Humanity!
Advocating at home and abroad is essential work for Habitat, since housing is a human right that all global citizens deserve. This is why we partner internationally, and why we engage proactively with our own government.
Our vision is a global one – a world where everyone has a decent place to live. We’re proud to be a part of an international organization that operates in 70 countries around the world and we’re proud that we help people at home and around the world through safe, decent and affordable housing.
Please join us and take action this World Habitat Day:
* Visit any of our three Habitat for Humanity ReStores (https://www.habitatniagara.ca/our-location-and-hours?mc_cid=c44093d1e3&mc_eid=UNIQID) , located in Fonthill, St. Catharines and Grimsby and contribute to diverting more waste from landfills by donating to our ReStores (https://www.habitatniagara.ca/what-items-can-be-donated?mc_cid=c44093d1e3&mc_eid=UNIQID) while also supporting affordable housing in your community.
* Shop online (https://habitatniagararestore.ca/?mc_cid=c44093d1e3&mc_eid=UNIQID) or in our ReStores. Your support helps us accomplish our mission and create the opportunity for local families to have a better life.
* Volunteer with us (https://app.betterimpact.com/PublicOrganization/8f5761e5-c330-4432-9f62-d28ec874915c/1?mc_cid=c44093d1e3&mc_eid=UNIQID) . Our organization is always in need volunteers. The time you give helps us to continue to make an impact on the lives of families who need affordable housing.
* Make a tax-deductible donation (https://www.habitatniagara.ca/donate-money?mc_cid=c44093d1e3&mc_eid=UNIQID) to Habitat for Humanity Niagara to transform families right here in your community – any gift will help.
With your help, we can build stronger communities right here in Niagara and around the world.
Mark Carl, Chief Executive Officer, Habitat for Humanity Niagara
To read a related Niagara At Large post on Habitat for Humanity, click on – https://niagaraatlarge.com/2017/07/14/a-few-words-of-tribute-for-jimmy-carter-and-dick-halverson-two-beacons-of-light-in-dark-times/
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