In 2016, Habitat for Humanity launched Solid Ground, our first global advocacy campaign, to increase access to land for shelter by influencing policies and systems at all levels of government. To date, nearly 3 million people around the world have increased access to secure land tenure through the Solid Ground campaign. Habitat for Humanity national organizations and partners in 41 countries are implementing the campaign alongside local communities.
We have seen many exciting successes since the launch of Solid Ground. We know the impact advocacy campaigns can have on individuals and communities. Solid Ground has allowed us to better coordinate advocacy activities at all levels around common goals to achieve greater collective impact. We are learning a great deal from the success of our first global advocacy campaign, and it provides us with a firm foundation to influence and build our first U.S. national advocacy campaign – Cost of Home.
Today, nearly 19 million U.S. households pay half or more of their income on a place to live. That is unacceptable. That means that 1 in 6 families in the U.S. are denied the personal and economic stability that safe, decent and affordable housing provides. Instead, 1 in 6 families are forced to make impossible choices.
Safe homes. Nutritious food on the table. Health care. Access to good schools. Reliable transportation. Which would you choose?
Through the Cost of Home campaign, Habitat for Humanity will work to ensure that no family has to pay more than half of their paycheck to cover the cost of home.
Over the next five years, Habitat for Humanity commits to mobilizing across all levels of the Habitat for Humanity network in the United States, including U.S. Habitat local organizations, our partners, our volunteers and community members to find the solutions and help create the policies that will improve home affordability for 10 million individuals. We will advocate for policies at the local, state and federal levels.
As you learn more about the Cost of Home campaign, you will find that it – similarly to Solid Ground – will work towards policy solutions at all levels of government. It has a clear target, offers varying levels of enrollment for our network and provides a clear platform for partners to engage. It also – just as Solid Ground does – focuses on four campaign subthemes, or policy solution areas. Through the Cost of Home campaign, Habitat for Humanity will work towards policy solutions that will:
- Increase supply and preservation of affordable homes,
- Equitably increase access to credit,
- Optimize land use for affordable homes, and
- Ensure access to and development of communities of opportunity.
We look forward to applying the experience we have gained from the Solid Ground campaign to tackle the critical issue of home affordability here in the U.S. Our advocacy campaigns are a key tool to achieve Habitat for Humanity’s vision of a world where everyone has a decent place to live.
Everyone deserves to build the foundation for a strong, healthy future for themselves and their families — no matter where they live or how much money they earn. Every family deserves the chance to thrive.
Together, we can make the #CostOfHome something we all can afford.