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Our Impact

Every Family Deserves a Safe and Stable Home

When you support Habitat Greater Ottawa, you’re helping to build more than just a home for a family. Safe, stable and affordable housing plays a critical role in helping families to build a solid foundation upon which they can thrive and access opportunities.

With over 12,000 households on Ottawa’s Centralized Waiting List, there are far too many families living in inadequate and unaffordable housing in our city. By increasing the number of homes we build, we are creating more opportunities for families to access homeownership affordably.

1 in 8 Canadians live in housing that is unaffordable

42% of Ottawa households are paying an unaffordable rent

Impact on Community

Housing instability — including frequent moves, overcrowding and unhealthy or unsafe living conditions — creates stress for families and impacts the well-being of children. When families pay a high percentage of their income on housing they often find themselves making impossible choices such as between paying for rent or health care, food or transportation. A 2015 study conducted by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) shows that on average, each Habitat for Humanity home generates $175,000 of benefits to society stemming from a reduction in the reliance on social housing and food banks, better educational, financial and employment outcomes and improved health and wellbeing overall.

Every $1 raised for Habitat for Humanity creates $4 in social impact.

Further benefits to the community when a family moves into a Habitat home include:

  • Rental and social housing units are freed up, increasing the availability of affordable housing
  • Habitat homeowners become tax payers, increasing contributions to the municipal property tax base.
  • Homeownership removes the ongoing need for government rental subsidies and building maintenance upkeep as families are responsible for maintaining their home and property.

Impact on Families

The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation conducted a Canada-wide survey of Habitat families in 2013. The majority reported improved health, happiness and overall wellbeing.

The study also found: 

  • 86% report feeling happier since moving into their Habitat for Humanity home.
  • 89% said their family lives improved.
  • 70% reported improved health, including reduced colds and flue, asthma, allergies and stress.
  • 65% reported an increase in their children's confidence. Children's participation in extraurricular activities also increased.

Impact on Children

When parents have trouble paying housing costs, it means that they don’t have enough money left over to buy their children healthy meals, invest in sports and the arts, or save up for their children’s education.

We believe it is the children of Habitat homeowners that benefit the most from a safe and stable place to live. Less stress, less sickness, more confidence and better grades are just a few of the positive changes Habitat homeowners see in their children. Children raised in a stable long-term home are also 22 percent more likely to attend post-secondary education and are to become homeowners themselves.

“When you have a parent who doesn’t have to worry about where money is coming from, or how we’re going to keep a roof over our heads, or whether or not we’re going to be staying put because the rent is too high and we’re going to be pushed out…when you have someone who doesn’t have to think about that, they can give so much more to their child. And that goes a long way in the life of a child.”

Rebecca, Habitat homeowner