||Building a World of Inclusion for People with Health Conditions and Disabilities|
The hallmark program of ABILITY Awareness is the ABILITY Build. Built in partnership with Habitat for Humanity affiliates and Fuller Center for Housing Covenant Partners, an ABILITY Build constructs an accessible home for a family where one or more members have health conditions or disabilities. Additionally, ABILITY builds engage volunteers with health conditions and disabilities to help build the homes, demonstrating to the community their skills, talents and potential as volunteers, employees and mentors.
The first ABILITY House was built in 1999 in Birmingham, Alabama for Chris Wright, a homeowner who has quadriplegia. "The ABILITY House will remove the barriers that keep people with disabilities from owning their own homes," said Millard Fuller, founder of Habitat for Humanity International, at the launch of the first ABILITY House which welcomed more than 250 volunteers with disabilities during its week-long blitz build. "This build will send a powerful message: People with disabilities can make a house into a home."
These builds have engaged thousands of volunteers, lead to employment opportunities, and ignited an enthusiasm in a volunteer pool who is generally expected to be the recipient of charity, and not the giver.
ABILITY Homes can be built throughout the United States or Internationally, anywhere there is a building organization interested in creating accessible housing and incorporating volunteers with disabilities or health conditions. Every
ABILITY House incorporates universal design elements and should follow the standards of visitability: which include one no-step entrance, wider hallways and an accessible restroom.
For more information on how to make your next build an ABILITY House, or to do an ABILITY Build incorporating volunteers with disabilities or health conditions, info[at]ABILITYawareness.org