Liberia, Housing Authority, NHA, Habitat for Humanity Int’l Sign MOU to Facilitate Increased Access to Affordable Housing for Low Income Households
Monrovia – The National Housing Authority (NHA) entered into a four-year Memorandum of Understanding with Habitat for Humanity International, a United States of the America-based organization, to facilitate increased access to affordable housing for low-income households through inclusive market approach. The signing ceremony, held at NHA headquarters in Monrovia was attended by Cities Alliance, Ministry of Internal Affairs, local partners as well as senior staff of NHA among others
Speaking at the signing ceremony, the Managing Director of NHA Hon. Duannah Siryon described the MoU as the formal process reinforcing existing collaboration between the two organizations since 2017 and first step in the right direction of NHA’s strategic partnerships under the new government. He expressed NHA’s openness to partner with other non-governmental organizations, private sector and communities with a shared vision in addressing the housing needs of the vulnerable and low-income Liberians consistent with the Government of Liberia’s Pro-Poor Agenda. Hon. Siryon termed interventions to be implemented under the partnership as crucial to the sustainable delivery of adequate and affordable housing especially to communities living in slums. He said, under this MoU, NHA commits to hosting the international partner and provide required support for smooth implementation of its programs through the Slum Upgrading Unit of the NHA. Hon. Siryon commended HFHI for choosing to partner with the NHA and encouraged such engagements to ensure sustainability of project initiatives. He applauded the Coordinator of the Slum Upgrading Unit under the leadership of Mr. Es-Samir Bropleh, other management and staff of the NHA for their dedication and support accorded to his administration and promised to provide the necessary leadership in realizing the mandate of the institution including attracting international partners.
Also speaking on behalf of Habitat for Humanity International, the Chief of Party, Mr. Mathew Ndote said, his organization is driven by the vision that everyone needs a decent place to live. Habitat for Humanity began in 1976 as a grassroots effort on a community farm in southern Georgia, in U.S. The housing organization has since grown to become a leading global nonprofit working in more than 70 countries. Families and individuals in need of a hand up partner with Habitat for Humanity to build or improve a place they can call home. Through financial support, volunteering or adding a voice to support affordable housing, everyone can help families achieve the strength, stability and self-reliance they need to build better lives for themselves. Through shelter, we empower.
Mr. Ndote further emphasized that both HFHI and NHA share the vision of providing greater access to adequate and affordable housing for low-income and vulnerable communities and plan to achieve this through working with public, private and community sector partners. He added that the Cities Alliance Liberia Country Program, provides a platform for partnership and collaboration between communities, public and private sector actors, to contribute towards improving the quality of lives for low-income and vulnerable communities and sustainable urban development. He commended NHA for the establishment of the Slum Upgrading Unit which demonstrates a significant policy shift by the government towards supporting slum upgrading and housing needs of low-income and vulnerable communities and signals government’s readiness to support efforts to improve the living conditions of low-income and vulnerable communities.
Mr. Ndote confirmed four main deliverables the two organizations intend to achieve under this MoU through an inclusive Market Systems Development Approach as:
Development of policy guidelines in consultation with all stakeholders;
Institutional capacity building of National Housing Authority, other relevant agencies and communities on Participatory Safe Shelter Awareness (PASSA);
Construction of community-level housing pilots; and
Capacity development for the private sector to play a greater role in delivering sustainable and affordable housing solutions.
According to Habitat, significant progress made so far could not have been achieved without the support, guidance, and contribution of the donors, Comic Relief and Cities Alliance, relevant government ministries and institutions, the slum communities, donors and local partners. He expressing HFHI’s honest desire to scale-up its interventions beyond pilots and collaboration with NHA and the Liberian Government beyond four years. He confirmed intensive work will commence on Monday, September 3, 2018.
Also speaking at the program were Hon. Abubakar Bah, Assistant Minister for Urban Affairs, Ministry of Internal Affairs and Mr. Vijay Parmar, Country Program Manager, Cities Alliance. They both welcomed the partnership and described it as an important achievement towards achieving the objective of the Liberia Country Program.