By Martin Howden

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The “stuff” that Habitat does in Ethiopia really works.

My wife Liz and I have been volunteering with Habitat Global Village teams in Ethiopia for almost eight years.  We were on both the first and the last GV teams to visit Debre Marcos – and the progress made in the intervening period was wonderful to behold.

Liz was lucky enough to go back to another town – Debre Birhan – two months ago, just five years since we first visited there in 2007 – and the progress there was similarly staggering.

These people do great   work. Houses are built – yes – but much more than that, security and shelter are provided, health and hygiene issues are dealt with, kids have somewhere safe to call home (and do their homework!), communities are built, and families stay together. And on the very margins of society, vulnerable groups of people such as those affected by leprosy not only find a home, but are also integrated into those communities.

And what does all of this cost? Cost of houses, all in – which even includes the employment of those great people in that small Habitat compound in Addis which many of you will have seen. Is there better value than this anywhere on the planet?

But “This Stuff Really Works” has a second meaning. My vocation is in Management Coaching – helping people in all walks of life to make a major contribution wherever they work. That could be in a school, in a charity, in a government organisation, or in the commercial sector. If you can spare five minutes to go to www.martinhowden.com you will find there a couple of books to help work through some of the inevitable problems which arise when we work with others. One of those books is called “This Stuff Really Works” – the other is “Courage to Change”.

And if you keep clicking you will see that, should you buy the books, all your money (yes – 100%) goes to support Habitat’s work in Ethiopia. What’s more, those wonderful folks at Habitat Great Britain have a way of finding other generous donors to match whatever you give. Significant amount of money has been raised so far – which with Habitat GB’s efforts secure more funds,   to build more houses, and move those homeowners on from poverty.

Please – go to the website and buy a book. Help yourself, and help some of the poorest people on earth at the same time.

And on behalf of Habitat’s team in Ethiopia – thank you.

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