Thursday, February 25, 2010

Habitat supporters are in Washington urging Congress to protect funding for programs that support Habitat’s Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative

A letter from Jonathan Reckford, CEO of HFH International:

Help protect habitat's neighborhood revitalization initiative.  call congress today! -- contact your representative

I am writing to you today from Washington, D.C., where I have joined hundreds of Habitat for Humanity volunteers and supporters. We are here to meet with congressional leaders to ask them to support Habitat in our efforts to get more families into safe, affordable housing.

Call your legislators right now to amplify the voice of supporters speaking out in Washington this week.

With your help, we can push back potential budget cuts that would reduce our ability to rebuild neighborhoods around the country. Habitat supporters from all over the U.S. are in Washington right now urging Congress to protect funding for programs that support Habitat’s Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative, including the Self-Help Homeownership Opportunity Program (SHOP).

We need your help.

The Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative is Habitat’s program to improve communities through an innovative combination of repair, rehabilitation, energy efficiency and new construction. Neighborhood revitalization will enable Habitat affiliates to serve more families than ever before.

Our advocates on the Hill are talking to representatives about issues ranging from funding domestic initiatives to international work worldwide. For example, in Haiti, we are committed to serving 50,000 Haitian families over the next five years. But now our work here at home is threatened by proposed congressional budget cuts — and you can help stop those cuts. Please call your legislators and tell them we can’t afford budget cuts that threaten essential Habitat programs.

It’s easy to make your voice heard — we’ll even help you get started! Just click here to give us your information. Then we’ll call you right away and connect you with your representative in Congress. We’ll also give you a couple of very short talking points to use. In just a few minutes you can make a big impact.

Thank you for your time,

Jonathan Reckford
Chief Executive Officer
Habitat for Humanity International

P.S.: Calling in only takes a couple minutes, and it can make a big difference. Please click here to get started now!

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Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The RMFHAITI Video - A Call To Action!

Ricky Martin recently made a call to action to the artistic community asking them to support Habitat for Humanity and his foundation in raising funds and awareness for Haiti.

Alicia Keys, Ellen DeGeneres, Carrie Underwood, Jimmy Fallon, Eva Longoria, Dave Matthews, Chris Pine, Ryan Seacrest, Janet Jackson, Linkin Park, Patti LaBelle, Enrique Iglesias, Adam Lambert, Kris Allen, Switchfoot, David Banner, Allison Iraneta, Sofia Vergara and Anthony Hamilton all answered the call. You can watch what they have to say here, or for a high resolution version click here.

Ricky Martin was on the ground in Haiti right after the devastating quake and is sharing this heartfelt message with his fans;

"Every aspect of people's lives in Haiti has been disrupted, and in many cases, almost completely destroyed. Although hearts and homes are shattered, spirits aren't broken. Meeting the families in Port Au Prince affected my soul and I knew I had to do all I could to protect the children. So, just like we did after the tsunami in Thailand, the Ricky Martin Foundation partnered with Habitat for Humanity and created a long-term plan. We then reached out to the artistic community and asked people to join us in our call to action. The response was overwhelming, over twenty top musicians, artists and TV personalities helped us create the RMFHAITI video, which you can view here. Now we need your help. Please join us as we rebuild hope, rebuild homes and rebuild Haiti. Thank you." - Ricky Martin

Please join us and the artists in the RMFHAITI video to Rebuild Hope. Rebuild Homes. Rebuild Haiti:

Text: "RMFHAITI" to 2-5-3-8-3 and make a $10 donation to the Ricky Martin Foundation/Habitat for Humanity Recovery Fund (RMFHAITI).

Donate: Any amount you can to the Ricky Martin Foundation/Habitat for Humanity Haiti Recovery Fund (RMFHAITI) here.

Bid: In the "Hardhats for Haiti" auction here. The auction featured hardhats signed by many of the artists in the RMFHAITI video plus Will and Jada Pinkett Smith, Justin Beiber, Ke$ha, Black Eyed Peas and more.

Advocate: Place the RMFHAITI video banner on your website.

Tweet: the link and ask your followers to spread the word by retweeting.

Follow: @ricky_martin @habitatali @rm_foundation for up to the minute info on the RMFHAITI program.

For more information on the RMFHAITI video and the Ricky Martin Foundation/Habitat for Humanity Haiti Recovery Fund (RMFHAITI) please click here, or contact @HabitatAli on twitter.

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Friday, February 19, 2010

Habitat for Humanity Affiliates Across The Country are at Risk & We Need Your Help

Two years ago, Congress passed the SAFE Act, intended to regulate commercial lenders and protect homeowners from unfair mortgage lending. Some states, however, have misinterpreted the law, imposing major burdens on local Habitat for Humanity affiliates, such as expensive bonding and licensing requirements, even though this bill was never meant to restrict nonprofit organizations like Habitat. Many local Habitat affiliates simply cannot continue serving families in need if these onerous requirements are applied to them. And in some states, time is quickly running out.

In California, the SAFE Act was signed by the Governor in October 2009 and will take effect soon. On behalf of the 49 Habitat affiliates in California, our affiliate sent an exemption request and a legal analysis to the Department of Corporations. That request is pending. We are also seeking support from the Attorney General. We will keep you posted on that, but in the meantime, Rep. Heath Shuler of North Carolina has stepped forward with a simple and effective fix. In a single stroke, the Shuler bill (H.R. 4400) will provide clarification at the national level, allowing states to protect Habitat mortgages, and allowing Habitat affiliates to continue their important work—but only if we ensure it has enough votes to pass.

Please contact your congressperson and encourage him/her to co-sponsor Rep. Shuler’s fix to the SAFE Act. Let’s get our members of congress to support this bill!

All you need to do is click here. Time is running out. Please take 2 minutes to ask your Congressperson to support this critical, common-sense effort.

Please send an email and encourage family and friends to do the same. Information on the SAFE Act will be posted to our website. For more information on the Shuler bill, visit and search for H.R. 4400.

Thanks for your help. 

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Habitat Supporters are in Washington Urging Congress to protect funding for programs that support Habitat Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative 
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Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Mayor of Lynwood Surprised 3 Very Wonderful Families

It was quite a thrill for all of us during a recent Lynwood City Council meeting, when Mayor Maria Teresa Santillan did the honors of surprising 3 families with the news that they had been selected for homeownership in our new Green Lynwood neighborhood! We caught the whole thing on sure to grab a tissue.

To read more stories of families selected by Habitat, check out these blog post:

Inside the HFH Internship: My First 'Good News Caravan'

Related Posts                                                                                                                                            

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Monroy Family Gets Surprised! Meet our New Homeowner Family!



Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Do YOU Know Habitat For Humanity?

There are a great many misconceptions about Habitat for Humanity, one of which is President Jimmy Carter's connection to the organization.   I am working on a post that will help clarify many of these and I'd love your help. Please post in our comments any questions you have about our organization and how it works.

Thank you for your help,
Erin Rank, president/CEO
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Los Angeles

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