Asia-Pacific youth and Habitat for Humanity join hands to implement solutions for decent housing

“I felt a sense of achievement, working with other volunteers,” said Glenna, a student who has repeatedly volunteered with her schoolmates to help the elderly declutter and clean their home in Singapore. A member of the Habitat for Humanity campus chapter based in Hwa Chong Institution, she is among 5,000 supporters of the 2024 Habitat for Humanity Young Leaders Build in eight countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

More than 100 students from 11 universities in Korea joined Habitat for Humanity Korea’s Campus Chapters and Youth Program DIY Festival, an initiative under the 2024 Habitat Young Leaders Build campaign. The volunteers raised funds and highlighted the housing need and Habitat’s solutions at the Festival.

“We at Habitat for Humanity know that young leaders lend a unique energy to our mission to build a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Since we started hosting the Habitat Young Leaders Build campaign in 2012, young people have contributed their creativity and energy to helping families in need build homes. We are excited to see more of them advocate for policies to expand access to adequate housing and innovate solutions for sustainable development. We are proud to amplify the outputs of youth-led activities and projects and how young leaders havecreated tangible positive impact in the communities where they work,” said Jay Ancheta, Volunteer Programs Associate Director for Asia-Pacific, Habitat for Humanity International.

The Young Leaders Build campaign opened its 13th season in December during International Volunteer Day. Volunteers lent their hand in various ways: helping earthquake affected communities in Nepal and Japan remove rubble and build temporary housing, expanding their peers’ awareness about the link between housing and urbanchallenges in Korea, building new houses in the Philippines, Indonesia, and Cambodia, and cleaning houses of vulnerable residents in Singapore and Hong Kong, among others. The campaign also highlights winning solutions toimprove housing conditions from young leaders in India, Indonesia, the Philippines and Nepal.

“The courage I’ve found to navigate the roads and earn a living for myself and my family stems from the security of having a home. My residence now stands as my pillar of strength,” said Pramila, a Habitat Nepal homeowner. “Having a stable home has left a profound and positive impact on our lives, bolstering our self-confidence.” Since moving into hernew home, she also volunteered for the HYLB campaign and became a champion of housing in her community.

Campaign volunteers worked alongside families in vulnerable situations, Habitat staff and community members to build, repair and paint houses and declutter and clean houses. They removed rubble, prepare temporary housing and build furniture for people affected by disaster. They also joined awareness-raising activities through social media anda walkathon. By the end of the campaign, the volunteers have served 1,720 families and raised more than US$93,000in support for the cause of housing.

About Habitat for Humanity Young Leaders Build

Habitat for Humanity Young Leaders Build brings the youth together from across the Asia-Pacific region to support people and families in need ofdecent housing. By volunteering, fundraising, raising awareness or adding their voices in support of affordable housing, every young person canhelp families achieve the strength, stability and self-reliance they need to build better lives for themselves. The movement encourages youths to take the lead and motivate their peers to build 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 found its earliest inspirations as a grassroots movement on an interracial community farm in U.S.A. Since its founding in 1976, the housing organization has 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. To learn more, donate or volunteer, visit habitat.org/asiapacific.

For further information, please contact:
Ms. Angeli Alba-Pascual
AAlba@habitat.org
+63 920 956 3376

Ms. Rona Azucena
RAzucena@habitat.org
+63 916 545 8310

Photos are available in this folder. Captions and photographer credits are provided in the folder.


Topic: Press release summary

Asia-Pacific housing stakeholders’ call to ‘build forward better’ continues at World Urban Forum, Poland

Key findings from the newly published Asia-Pacific Forum report will be brought to the global conversations on housing and shelter amid the impacts of climate change, and COVID-19 during the 11th World Urban Forum on June 26-30, 2022, at Katowice, Poland.
“Building forward better through inclusive housing means that each one of us, especially the most vulnerable families we serve through housing solutions, has a voice in the process and a role to play in increasing access to a decent place to live,” said Luis Noda, Habitat for Humanity’s Asia-Pacific vice president and one of the speakers at the Asia-Pacific Housing Forum. “This core belief guides Habitat for Humanity as we lend our voices on WUF11 discussions on building resilience to a broad range of shocks and threats through an innovative and inclusive approach, thus working toward a sustainable and green future for our global community.”

WUF11’s overall theme will be focusing on overcoming the multiple urban crises while transforming our cities for a better urban future.

In alignment with WUF11 thematic objectives, the participants from the Asia-Pacific forum also focused on the shared responsibility and individual roles of the government, civil society, the private sector, academia, and the donor community in achieving appropriate housing for everyone. Forming partnerships and encouraging social participation and innovation that allow for a sustainable response to the housing problem are critical in strengthening resilience against other factors that compound the housing challenges of the region–the effects of climate change, inadequate national housing policies and programs, limited access to technologies, and lack of empowered communities.

As Asia-Pacific continues to feel the long-term impact of COVID-19–UN estimates that 200 million people might be forced into extreme poverty by 2030 and the region is one of the most highly affected areas–the housing sector remains critical to the region’s economic, social, and environmental recovery.

Other WUF11 themes resonate with other critical issues that surfaced during the APHF, such as effective responses to the housing challenge can also drive urban development and should be equally concerned with the environment. Greening the housing value chain can help reduce costs and impacts in the short and long term. Thus, it requires a shift to sustainable methods on material production, design/manufacturing, usage, recycling, among others; and should be supported by access to information and technologies, capacity building, and resources.
More than 900 housing stakeholders, including the public, private, and civil society sectors, from 53 locations have participated at the eighth Asia-Pacific Housing Forum held last December 7-9, 2021. The discussions above are summarized in the final report available at the APHF website, www.aphousingforum.org.

About Habitat for Humanity

Driven by the vision that everyone needs a decent place to live, Habitat for Humanity found its earliest inspirations as a grassroots movement on an interracial community farm in U.S.A. Since its founding in 1976, the housing organization has 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. To learn more, donate or volunteer, visit habitat.org/asiapacific.

Hong Kong – SFH attends 11th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation High-Level Meeting on Health and the Economy (with photo)

SFH attends 11th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation High-Level Meeting on Health and the Economy (with photo)

******************************************************************************************


     The Secretary for Food and Health, Professor Sophia Chan, attended the 11th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) High-Level Meeting on Health and the Economy today (August 24) via video conferencing to discuss and exchange views with leaders of other economies on the nexus of health and the economy in the context of COVID-19.
      
     Under the theme of Making the Economic Case for Health Equity in a COVID-19 World, senior health officials from member economies shared views on challenges to public health systems and economies as the world continues its enduring battle against the COVID-19 pandemic; measures to ensure equitable distribution of vaccines and medical products; as well as strengthening the resilience of the global public health system to respond to future health threats, and promoting sustainable and inclusive economic growth.
      
     During the discussion session, Professor Chan shared her views on supply chain resilience of COVID-19 vaccines: “As we have entered the second year of the battle against COVID-19, it has become clear to the global community that vaccination is one of the keys to ending the pandemic. The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government has launched a territory-wide COVID-19 Vaccination Programme since February 2021 and the ‘Early Vaccination for All’ campaign in end-May 2021 in order to boost public uptake of vaccines. Hong Kong, China, will continue to support and participate in the joint effort of ensuring sustainable and equitable access to safe and affordable COVID-19 vaccines, as well as addressing vaccine hesitancy and misinformation, in order to promote extensive immunisation against COVID-19 as a global public good.
 
     “Strong international and regional collaboration is paramount in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. Hong Kong, China, remains committed to closely collaborating with other APEC member economies in order to strengthen our global health systems and pandemic preparedness, and respond to future health threats,” Professor Chan added.
 
     Before the end of the meeting, Professor Chan and health officials of other economies jointly adopted a statement to affirm continued international and regional collaboration on health on various fronts.