Leveraging funds provided in part by MacKenzie Scott's transformational donation, Habitat for Humanity International is launching a new initiative to address the racial homeownership gap—which now stands at nearly 30 percent, the widest it has been in more than 40 years.
Habitat's Advancing Black Homeownership initiative deepens our commitment to increase homeownership opportunities for Black individuals and families—and address the racial and systemic bias that has stymied access to homeownership for generations—through programs that will help end the social and economic disparity many Black people and communities of color continue to face.
Habitat is initially investing more than $25 million over the next three to five years—with a goal of raising $100 million or more—to develop and launch a slate of new programs, including an equitable commercial lending strategy and property acquisition fund through Habitat Mortgage Solutions, our community development financial institution.
"These efforts are designed to help Black families build intergenerational wealth through homeownership and other strategic supports, such as developing more inclusive communities, increasing the availability of affordable homes near public transportation and jobs, and transforming concentrated areas of poverty into areas of opportunity," said Adrienne Goolsby, senior vice president of the U.S. and Canada for Habitat for Humanity International. "Ultimately, we want to reduce the impact a century of discriminatory housing policies has had on the Black community."
Other initiative programs include financial coaching and counseling to help Habitat affiliates address the needs of applicants along their homeownership journey; a national Black homeowner advisory group to help Habitat for Humanity International develop strategies and implement programs to help increase Black homeownership; expanded advocacy outreach through the Cost of Home campaign; and collaborative efforts with affordable housing partners. Funding opportunities will also be made available to Habitat affiliates doing innovative work to help increase Black homeownership.
Our mission is driven by our theological imperative to seek justice and to have mercy. Doing so through this work, we put God's love into action and help further our mission to build homes, communities and hope."
Jonathan Reckford, CEO of Habitat for Humanity International
About Habitat for Humanity International
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 south Georgia. Since its founding in 1976, the Christian housing organization has grown to become a leading global nonprofit working in local communities across all 50 states in the U.S. and in more than 70 countries. Families and individuals in need of a hand up partner with Habitat for Humanity to build or improve a place they can call home. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage. 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.