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A Hand Up for a Family To Own Their Own Home

Media Release: Friday, 6 May 2005

_For immediate release_

A Hand Up Not a Hand Out for a Family To Own Their Own Home

This week Habitat for Humanity Manukau started building their 51^st house for a family in real need in South Auckland.

The charity house build represents a successful partnership between Habitat for Humanity, Housing New Zealand Corporation, two major corporate sponsors Cisco Systems and TelstraClear, and the Ropati family, the recipients of the new home.

The Prime Minister, the Rt Hon Helen Clark, who will officially open the new TelstraClear Pacific Events Centre next Friday where the build is taking place, says “Habitat for Humanity is a good example of how Government, the business community and a community housing provider work with families to own their own home”.

The Crown through Housing New Zealand Corporation has worked closely with Habitat for Humanity Manukau via a community wide project in South Auckland.

“When families put the hard effort into building their own home, and receive the practical support that Habitat for Humanity and its partners offer; it is clear to me that a very real impact on communities occurs,” Prime Minister Helen Clark says.

Cisco Systems New Zealand Country Manager NZ, David Barker, said “Locally, Cisco’s support of Habitat ranges from our people to our technology to a cash contribution of US$150,000 over three years. This is part of Cisco Systems worldwide commitment to Habitat of people, technology and US $3million. Cisco New Zealand is also using its network of contacts to encourage other businesses to support Habitat for Humanity.

TelstraClear’s Sponsorship and Events Manager, Ken Dickson, said "The sponsorship's about working together with Cisco Systems, Habitat for Humanity and the Ropati family to improve the living conditions of a Manukau family.

"Not only is the sponsorship a worthwhile cause, it truly demonstrates businesses and the community working together. The versatility of the TelstraClear Pacific venue enables the house to be completed on-site in the next fortnight,” Mr Dickson said.

The Ropati family is working alongside teams from TelstraClear and Cisco Systems to build the house.

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