Habitat, NBC, Warner Music Kick Off Project in Humanity Plaza

Project “Make a Difference Today,” sponsored by Habitat for Humanity International and partners, began building homes at “Humanity Plaza” on Monday, Sept. 26.

New York’s Rockefeller Plaza was turned into “Humanity Plaza” beginning yesterday and will remain a construction site for homes for hurricane survivors for the next five days. Joining Habitat for Humanity International in this effort are NBC News “Today” and Warner Music Group.

During the five days, homes for families displaced by Hurricane Katrina will be built around the clock. The frames of the homes will be built in “Humanity Plaza” and then will be shipped to the Gulf Coast region starting Sept. 30, where the rest of the homes will be completed.

The project pledges to build at least 100 homes in the next two months.

“Habitat for Humanity is poised to deliver an unprecedented response to an unprecedented natural disaster,” said Chris Clarke, Senior Vice President of Communications, for Habitat for Humanity International. “To do so, to rebuild the lives of families who have lost so much and provide the ‘hand up’ that is the hallmark of our work will require an unprecedented level of support."

As an ecumenical Christian ministry, Habitat for Humanity International is focused on providing homes for financially disadvantaged families and eliminating poverty housing. Since 1976, Habitat has built over 200,000 homes in nearly 100 countries, providing a home for over one million people.

In addition to New York, Habitat for Humanities across the nations are joining forces to build homes in efforts to help the Gulf Coast inhabitants. Among the cities where Habitat homes are being built are Los Angeles, California and Jackson, Mississippi. The homes built will all be transported to the states affected by the hurricane and installed on the first week of October.

“In Mississippi alone 240,000 homes have been destroyed or damage beyond repair,” said Matt Lauer of NBC news “Today” on Sept. 26. “Now add the damages from Hurricane Rita and we are looking at the largest resettlement project ever attempted in this country.”

Molly Parrish, the media director for Habitat Humanity International, noted that the organization has presently raised more than $18 million in Hurricane relief funds.