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UN Youth Envoy To Open Volunteer Conference Supporting Habitat For Humanity’s COVID-19 Response


Habitat Young Leaders Build celebrates 10 years and 17
million supporters

MANILA, Apr 23, 2021 – (ACN
Newswire) – The United Nations Secretary-General’s Envoy for
Youth, Jayathma Wickramanayake, will deliver the opening
remarks during the “Youth from Home for Homes” virtual
conference, the peak of the 2021 Habitat for Humanity Young
Leaders Build campaign. Over a hundred youth from the
Asia-Pacific region have registered for the event, which
also marks a decade of youth volunteerism for the cause of
safe, affordable housing.

“Young people are the
backbone of society, and our only hope in creating a better
world and a better future for all. But youth cannot do it
alone. It is pivotal that young people be included as
full-fledged partners in all decision and policy-making that
affects their lives and futures, including SDG 11, target 1
on access for all to adequate, safe and affordable housing
and basic services,” said Wickramanayake.

Joining the
UN youth envoy for the conference on April 24 are young
leaders who will present highlights from their
community-based projects in support of Habitat’s work during
the pandemic. These include raising funds to build core
houses in Sri Lanka and advocating for affordable housing
among local government officials in the
Philippines.

“Many in our community lost their jobs
and livelihoods but we want to support our community and
keep it healthy during the pandemic,” said Kim Claire
Darugo, a Filipino volunteer. A member of Pasig 1 Community
Youth Group, which is active in a neighborhood that Habitat
helped build, she and her fellow volunteers are raising
funds for hygiene kits to be donated to families in
vulnerable situations in the Philippines.

Almost
seventy volunteers from ten countries have started to
implement multi-month projects under the Young Leaders Build
campaign. The volunteers comprise of university students,
young professionals and youth with vocations.

“We see
young people negatively impacted by Covid-19 especially in
the areas of education, opportunities and social contacts.
In these unprecedented times of economic and social
distress, I am inspired by the resilience of these 70 young
leaders who have responded to the challenge to support
Habitat’s vision of a world where everyone has a decent
place to live,” said Luis Noda, Vice-President for
Asia-Pacific, Habitat for Humanity
International.

Other volunteer-led projects include
providing cash and in-kind assistance for families in need
to repair or build safe, healthy homes and the construction
of community facilities such as handwash stations, solar
lighting and urban gardens. Volunteers also plan to train
other youth and their families on ways to protect their
household from the coronavirus, promote mental health, and
facilitate learning from home.

Since 2012, more than
17 million Habitat Young Leaders Build supporters have
raised almost US$9 million to help more than 33,000 families
achieve the strength, stability and self-reliance they need
to build better lives for themselves. While the 2021
campaign peaks in April, the momentum will continue as youth
groups and volunteers will continue their projects until
2022.

About Habitat for Humanity Young Leaders
Build

Habitat for Humanity Young Leaders Build brings
together youth from across the Asia Pacific region to
support people and families in need of decent housing. Every
young person volunteering, fundraising, raising awareness
and adding their voices in support of affordable housing can
help families achieve the strength, stability and
self-reliance they need to build better lives for
themselves. The movement encourages youth to take the lead
and motivate their peers to create societal changes by
building homes and communities, on a Habitat build site
and/or online through their social networks.

About
Habitat for Humanity

Driven by the vision that
everyone needs a decent place to live, Habitat for Humanity
began in 1976 as a grassroots effort. The Christian housing
organization has since grown to become a leading global
nonprofit working in more than 70 countries. In the
Asia-Pacific region since 1983, Habitat for Humanity has
supported millions of people to build or improve a place
they can call home. Through financial support, volunteering
or adding a voice to support affordable housing, everyone
can help families achieve the strength, stability and
self-reliance they need to build better lives for
themselves. Through shelter, we empower. To learn more,
donate or volunteer, visit habitat.org/ap.

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