Northwest NEWS

May 28, 2001

Editorial

People are building tall fences pretending the rest of the world doesn't exist

"In Seattle people are building big houses with tall fences, as if pretending that the rest of the world does not exist," remarked Millard Fuller, founder of Habitat for Humanity, in an interview for a newspaper a while back. I couldn't agree more with this statement. Povertly levels are on the rise and not many people seem to notice. As our economy is progressing, it's helping the upper, middle and educational class, but hurting the lower class, because they are being left behind. That is why so many families are living below poverty level. In 1999, the poverty level of a family of four was $16,700. In central cities, 1.2 million working families are living in critical housing conditions, and in the suburbs the numbers even larger, with a staggering 1.3 million.
   Sub-standard living conditions have always existed, that is what motivated Fuller, in 1986, to develop this life altering organization. It's an organization working with volunteers and communities to build simple, decent homes for families in need and at the same time fighting poverty. They build homes and sell them at no profit. Their mortgage plan for the family has no interest, which is why families are able to pay for the home without ending up in debt. They help families in need and give them the hope and the start they need to build a brighter future.
   Habitat for Humanity is such a worthwhile cause, I think everyone that has extra time on their hands, tools lying around that they would like to donate, or even money, should get involved. Poverty isn't just going to disapper overnight; we all have to put our share of effort in if we want to resolve this urgent problem. If you would like to help, simply call Seattle Habitat for Humanity at (206) 292-5240, or e-mail www.seattle-habitat.org, it would only take a second of your time. Remember, one person can make a difference.
   Karen Boun