Habitat for Humanity Chapters to Gather at Baylor Nov. 21-23

Nov. 14, 1997

WACO, Texas - More than 500 members from Habitat for Humanity collegiate chapters will gather at Baylor University Nov. 21-23 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the collegiate chapter program for the non-profit organization.

The opening ceremony of the conference will begin at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 21, in the Jones Concert Hall on the Baylor campus. Featured speaker will be Millard Fuller, founder and president of Habitat for Humanity International. Fuller and his wife, Linda, began Habitat as a way to end poverty housing worldwide.

Other special guests scheduled to participate in the conference include Wayne Walker, chairman of Habitat's International Board of Directors and Dr. Gary Cook, who founded the Baylor Habitat chapter in 1987 and currently serves as president of Dallas Baptist University.As they celebrate the 10th anniversary of the organized youth involvement with Habitat, participating students also will launch "Building Tomorrow-Starting Today," a program challenging young people to build 100 new Habitat houses between Nov. 1997 and Nov. 1998.

"Baylor House," the first of those houses, will be dedicated at a ceremony at 1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 22. Approximately 50 students who make up the Baylor chapter of Habitat for Humanity are constructing the house at 1218 N. 15th St.

Carter Harrison Jackson, executive director for the Waco chapter of Habitat, said that the 1,050-square-foot home will cost approximately $30,000. A low-income family will then purchase the home through a no-interest loan.

This is the second house that the Baylor chapter has been responsible for building; however the group has worked closely with the Waco chapter and has helped build more than 40 houses. The Baylor chapter built its first house in 1990.

Other anniversary events include a breakfast hosted by Maxwell House Coffee, sponsor of the "Build a Home America" program; a block party; and a chat via the Internet between Fuller and students from Kwansei Gakuin, Habitat's first Campus Chapter in Japan. Students at the conference also will attend the Baylor-Oklahoma State football game.

Baylor was the first university in the United States to organize a collegiate Habitat for Humanity chapter. Currently, 456 colleges and universities worldwide sponsor campus chapters. At work in more than 50 countries, Habitat has built more than 60,000 houses. The organization plans to dedicate its 100,000th house in the year 2000.

A limited number of tickets to the opening ceremony and Fuller's speech are available to the public at no charge. For more information, contact Jackson at (254) 756-7575.

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