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Builders of Hope Honored with NHC 2009 Pioneering Housing Strategies Award

Organization Chosen for Comprehensive “Building Green Communities” Model Focused on Providing Safe, Affordable and Environmentally-Friendly Urban Housing Solutions for Working Families

Washington, DC (December 15, 2009) – The National Housing Conference (NHC) announced today that Builders of Hope, Inc. (BOH) was honored with the 2009 NHC "Pioneering Housing Strategies" Award for helping to close an expanding gap between the availability and the need for safe, affordable and environmentally-friendly urban housing solutions in the Raleigh, NC area. Specifically, BOH was selected for its uniquely comprehensive Building Green Communities model, which includes its Extreme Green Rehabilitation process and related Work Mentor program. Through its rehabilitation process, BOH recycles homes slated for demolition using green building standards and then sells them at cost to working families. The organization’s work program provides “green collar” and basic workplace competency job training to chronically unemployed populations, such as the homeless, ex-offenders and at-risk youth, in a full life-mentoring program – helping to contribute to the long-term revitalization and economic sustainability of each community in which BOH works.

Among the organization’s greatest achievements are its contributions to the environment. In 2008 alone, BOH saved more than two million pounds of construction debris from entering landfills. In addition, homes produced using the Extreme Green Rehabilitation model have passed both the North Carolina Healthy Built Homes and Advanced Energy’s SystemVision guarantee process. Ultimately, this means that these energy-efficient homes will be more affordable to owners over the long run with the money they will save on utilities. Additionally, in 2009, BOH was honored as a leader in sustainable development, receiving the City of Raleigh’s Environmental Stewardship Award.

"Builders of Hope’s multi-layered 'Building Green Communities' model is truly a pioneering housing strategy that is influencing change by connecting housing to a broader range of societal issues," said NHC President and CEO Conrad Egan. "The organization’s preservation of the environment through the rehabbing of homes, combined with the valuable job training that chronically unemployed populations like the homeless and ex-offenders receive through the full life-mentoring program, is a timely approach that is helping to address both the challenges of today and those of the future."

"We are honored and humbled to be recognized among such an esteemed collection of innovators in affordable housing," said BOH Founder and CEO Nancy Murray. "We look forward to working together with the National Housing Conference in our continued efforts to improve the quality, sustainability and availability of truly affordable housing throughout the country."

BOH is currently working to revitalize communities in five cities throughout the Triangle, NC area. The organization will also be expanding to Charlotte, NC and is exploring several projects outside of North Carolina. Founded in 2006, the organization’s first development, Barrington Village, was completed in 2008, resulting in a successful 24-home, mixed-income community in Southeast Raleigh that paved the way for additional projects in the area. The Wall Street Journal called Barrington Village "the most politically correct housing development on the planet" for its inventive approach to the creation of affordable housing.

About the Award

Established this year, the "Pioneering Housing Strategies" Award was developed to replace the NHC "Excellence in Housing Communications" Award in order to recognize a broader range of creative activities. The honor acknowledges pioneering, forward-thinking strategies that are changing the way we approach affordable housing and community development initiatives.

Award finalists included the Atlanta Housing Authority, Atlanta Neighborhood Development Partnership, Bank of America, Enterprise Community Partners, Inc., Fairfax County Department of Housing and Community Development, Mercy Housing Chicago, Mercy Housing Idaho, Metropolitan Planning Council, NeighborWorks® America, Ohio Finance Housing Agency, Preservation of Affordable Housing, Inc., San Diego Housing Commission, and Stewards of Affordable Housing for the Future.

Beginning this week, NHC will feature project and program submissions from each of the award finalists on its "Open House" Blog with its new topic, “Pioneering Housing Strategies: NHC Members Making a Difference in Local Communities.”

The recipient of last year’s "Excellence in Housing Communications" Award was BRIDGE Housing Corporation for its interactive "virtual municipality" BRIDGEtown, which showcases the organization’s mixed-use and mixed-income neighborhoods, providing a valuable framework for developers looking to create similar models in their own communities.