In our community, there are too many people living in homes that are inadequate. By inadequate, we mean homes with no indoor plumbing, poor heating, leaks in the roof, overcrowding, and unsafe or unsanitary conditions.
It is our mission that every family in San Juan County (Farmington, NM) have a decent place to live. With a little help, we believe families can be empowered to overcome the barriers that so often stand between their families and better, healthier, more stable lives.
Tres Rios Habitat for Humanity builds new homes in partnership with local families who have a demonstrated need for better, more adequate and affordable housing.
HISTORY OF OUR ORGANIZATION
Habitat for Humanity was founded in 1976 by Millard and Linda Fuller to address the issues of poor housing conditions. They developed the concept of "partnership housing." The concept centers on those in need of adequate shelter working side by side with volunteers to build decent, affordable houses.
Houses are built at no profit, and new homeowners make small house payments on no interest loans. These payments go into "The Fund for Humanity," which is used to build and repair more homes for families needing a hand-up.
Our local charter, Tres Rios Habitat for Humanity, began in 1991 and continues the mission first set forth by Millard and Linda Fuller.
WHY SUPPORT TRES RIOS HABITAT?
Many of you reading this might be asking, "Why should I donate to Tres Rios Habitat?".
According to an article published in USA Today last September, 24.8% of our local population lives in poverty. This is more than double the 12% average poverty rate in the United States. USA Today ranked us as #6 poorest city in the U.S.
HOW WILL THIS EFFECT CHANGE?
Homeownership has been proven to improve the quality of life of program participants. The program enhances the human, social and economic capital of our communities, resulting in benefits for all.
1. Contributes positively to young people’s participation in school and their academic performance.
2. Increases or maintains feelings of financial security for most homeowners, enabling many of them to have more money to spend on their families than they had previously.
3. Positively affects feelings of safety.
4. Is associated with less use of government programs.
5. Tends to promote greater social connectedness and participating in community activities.
It is easy to see the very real impact of building affordable homes on the individual families. However, Tres Rios Habitat has an even larger economic and social impact that promotes sustainability within our community.
1. We hire local contractors and builders. These contractors work in partnership with Habitat, and while they sometimes provide discounted services, they often pick up additional business from their association with Habitat. During these difficult economic times, Habitat projects provide a much-needed source of employment and revenue for the local construction industry.
2. Another benefit is that the value of the home often far exceeds the actual cost of the construction. We normally can construct a three bedroom home for around $130,000 with the help of donated materials and reduced-cost/volunteer labor. The actual value of the homes are appraised at $160,000 to $180,000. This instant equity has a clear economic value.
3. Habitat also has immeasurable impact on the neighborhoods where the homes are built. The owners selected to benefit from the program have been thoroughly vetted and trained on how to be both a responsible individual and neighbor. Because they own their homes and will directly enjoy the rewards of property value appreciation (along with bearing the costs if values decline), owners take better care of their homes than renters. This often translates into improved property values for nearby properties in the community. This has been shown to be true in the Flora Vista community where the most recent Habitat homes have been built.
4. Because ownership is a typically more permanent than renting, owners also tend to have more of a stake in their communities. They are more likely to vote in local elections and make a stronger commitment to their local public schools. Specifically, owners’ children are less likely to drop out of school, and perform better academically (as mentioned above).
5. Habitat homeowners pay local property taxes on their Habitat homes. This represents new (or at least increased) revenues to local government for the purposes of providing schools, police and fire protection, infrastructure, and many other local services.