As the holidays approach and another year comes to an end, we want to thank you for all your hard work towards and support for the advocacy accomplishments of the Habitat for Humanity network in 2018. We are excited for the year ahead and look forward to working collaboratively with you and the entire Habitat network to ensure that more families have the chance to thrive.
A few of our favorite things…
For the very first time in 2018, U.S. affiliates were asked to report on their advocacy efforts in the Affiliate Statistical Report, and we're thrilled to report that more than 400 affiliates in 46 states and the District of Columbia reported engaging in advocacy. We confirmed that affiliates and state support organizations influenced state and local policy and systems estimated to increase access to affordable housing for nearly 400,000 individuals.
During the 2018 midterm elections, more than 32 state and local ballot measures to benefit affordable housing were put before the public for a vote—many supported by Habitat for Humanity's network. Voters approved housing initiatives that will provide over $7 billion in additional funding for affordable housing in communities across the U.S.
For the first time we reached capacity at Habitat on the Hill, our annual legislative conference. More than 350 attendees gathered in Washington, D.C. to hone their advocacy skills and take Habitat's legislative messages to Capitol Hill.
At the federal level, our network successfully advocated to maintain level funding for all of Habitat's federal program priorities in the fiscal year 19 appropriations process—a key ask during congressional meetings at Habitat on the Hill. These critical programs include HOME, SHOP, Section 4, CDBG, national service, and the USDA 502 and 504 programs.
We protected the ability of Habitat affiliates and other nonprofit housing developers to accept donated appraisals after the HOME Act was signed into law in May.
Our U.S. network also helped to improve global living conditions by supporting the Better Utilization of Investments Leading to Development, or BUILD Act, which will mobilize capital to support broad-based economic growth and poverty reduction around the world.
Thank you for your contributions to these advocacy wins—and so many more—that the Habitat for Humanity network has achieved this year.