The Millard Fuller Legacy Build (MFLB) named in memory of Millard Fuller, founder of Habitat for Humanity and The Fuller Center for Housing (FCH), is an annual internationally-recognized week of building that brings attention to the need for simple, decent and affordable housing. Each year this event is celebrated by hosting a large build that volunteers from all over the world join. FCH is excited to announce that this year that event is happening in Armenia!
Armenia, a land of rich history, beautiful mountainous scenery, and fascinating cultural heritage is also a land of great need. Since the launch of the Fuller Center for Housing Armenia (FCHA) in 2008, they have been able to provide safe, decent, and affordable housing to more than 450 families! During this build we will be looking to help twelve families from Vanadzor to attain their dream of owning a home. These families are still living in the steel “domiks” brought in for temporary housing after the 1988 earthquake. Participants will have the option to stay for one or two weeks.
To become an FCHA beneficiary, prospective homeowners must complete an application. The application first undergoes a paper audit and then a field audit to determine eligibility. To be eligible, a family must own a half-built home/apartment or a home/apartment in need of renovation; have an income which can sustain the family, but is not enough to allow them to complete construction of the home on their own or to pay off a bank loan; and, as a result of these factors, live in substandard housing (typically, a portion of the uncompleted house, a “domik”, or a borrowed home). FCHA has no shortage of applicants.
In addition to its sweat equity, the beneficiary family is only required to cover the cost of basic materials. All labor is on a voluntary basis. Upon completion and occupation of the house, the cost of materials is converted to an interest-free mortgage (what the Fuller Center calls “the economy of Jesus”), which the family pays in an affordable monthly amount. These funds are then used to purchase materials for other villagers’ homes.
The positive impact of the FCHA program extends beyond the tangible economic and social benefits. It has proven to be 100% effective in stemming emigration. NOT ONE FAMILY HELPED BY FCHA HAS EMIGRATED.
From the perspective of the volunteers, this experience allows them to learn about the homeland and enjoy the satisfaction of engaging in a truly Christian experience. It’s a win-win-win situation!
For further information and to register for the trip, please go to the website www.fullercenter.org and click on “Upcoming Events”, Millard Fuller Legacy Build – Armenia.