Habitat for Humanity’s MicroBuild Fund Wins Classy Award for Innovation in Social Good

Jul 14, 2017 8:35 AM ET
Press Release

ATLANTA, July 14, 2017 /3BL Media/ - Selected from 100 finalists to become one of 10 winners, Habitat for Humanity recently received a Classy Award, which recognizes the most innovative solutions to the world’s toughest social issues. The winning program, Habitat’s MicroBuild Fund, was recognized for creating social, scalable and sustainable impact by partnering with microfinance institutions across the globe on housing finance solutions.

Classy, an online and mobile fundraising platform for social enterprises, created the Classy Awards to bring attention to the work nonprofits are doing across the globe. The Classy Leadership Council, an honorary board of 100 industry leaders and cause experts, chose the winners.

“The Classy Awards have become a special moment each year to take a step back and marvel at the social innovation taking place on a global level,” said Pat Walsh, co-founder and chief impact officer at Classy. “We’re honored to recognize these 10 Classy Award winners and the ingenious ways they’re approaching some of the world’s most complex issues.”

Habitat’s MicroBuild Fund is the first impact capital fund to invest in the innovation and scale of incremental construction and home improvement finance for low-income households in developing countries. MicroBuild provides lines of credit to local financial institutions who then design and offer home improvement loans to low-income households to build or improve their homes. The program also provides technical assistance to borrowing financial institutions and advises on ways to strengthen consumer access to quality materials, services, and project budgeting and planning information.

To date MicroBuild has lent more than $72 million across 25 countries resulting in improved housing for over 330,000 people. Financing for home improvements average just over $2,000 and MicroBuild’s investments have attracted additional investment capital at more than a 2-to-1 ratio to help expand access to increasingly more low-income families.

“We are honored Habitat’s MicroBuild Fund won this award. The Classy Awards incite meaningful dialogue bringing light to social issues which are affecting people globally, and we are greatly encouraged by being a part of the conversation for social change,” said Patrick Kelley, global senior director of Habitat for Humanity’s Terwilliger Center for Innovation in Shelter.

The MicroBuild Fund was selected from a list of 100 innovative, impactful and effective candidates from across the globe. Each Classy Awards nominee was evaluated based on their work in solving a social problem, understanding of the problem and its context, theory of change for their solution, and metrics and benchmarks to judge success along with organizational effectiveness and resource management.

The Classy Awards ceremony capped off the Collaborative, Classy’s three-day experience that convenes social innovators from around the world to incite meaningful dialogue and accelerate progress in the social sector. The 2017 Collaborative was presented by Classy, Fluxx, Plenty, Southwest Airlines and The Boston Foundation, in partnership with Appirio, Benevity, Omatic Software, Qlik, TripAdvisor, Twilio and other sponsors.

Learn more about Habitat’s winning program. For more information on the 2018 Collaborative + Classy Awards, visit classy.org/collaborative.

The MicroBuild fund was launched by Habitat for Humanity’s Terwilliger Center for Innovation in Shelter with support from Omidyar Network, Triple Jump, the Met Life Foundation, Hilti Foundation, IKEA Foundation, the Overseas Private Investment Cooperation, Morgan Lewis, Stanard Family Foundation and the J Ronald Terwilliger Family Foundation.

Habitat’s Terwilliger Center supports 48 microfinance institutions across 28 countries to design and deliver housing impacting over 4 million individuals throughout Latin America, Africa, Europe, Asia and the Pacific.

To learn more, visit habitat.org/tcis.

About Habitat for Humanity

Driven by the vision that everyone needs a decent place to live, Habitat for Humanity began in 1976 as a grassroots effort on a community farm in southern Georgia. The Christian housing organization has since grown to become a leading global nonprofit working in more than 1,300 communities throughout the U.S. and in nearly 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. To learn more, visit habitat.org

About Classy

Classy is the world’s leading fundraising platform for social enterprises with the goal of solving social problems more effectively and efficiently. Since launching in 2011, Classy has helped more than 3,000 social enterprises including Oxfam, World Food Program USA and National Geographic to raise hundreds of millions of dollars. Classy also hosts the Collaborative, a three-day summit and awards ceremony that convenes impactful social enterprises and celebrates achievements in the sector. Based in San Diego, California, Classy employs a staff of over 200 people and was recognized by Glassdoor in 2017 as one of the Best Places to Work. Other recent recognition includes Fast Company’s 2016 10 Most Innovative Companies for Social Good, Entrepreneur Magazine’s 2016 10 Most Brilliant Companies for Social Impact, and a “Rising Star” recognition in the first-ever Forbes Cloud 100 list. Classy is backed by investors including JMI Equity, Mithril and Salesforce Ventures. For more information, visit www.classy.org or follow Classy on Twitter: @Classy.