Habitat for Humanity: How it started

The following is an excerpt from Habitat for Humanity’s webpage: habitat.org/about/history/timeline


The Jordan and England families found Koinonia Farm, a community outside Americus, Georgia, where all people are treated equally, resources are shared, and great responsibility is placed on being wise stewards of land and natural resources.


The Jordan family and other Koinonia residents are excommunicated from Rehoboth Southern Baptist Church for their views on racial equality.


Boycott of Koinonia products by the local business community begins and continues into the mid-1960s.


Clarence Jordan receives letter of support from Martin Luther King Jr.


Searching for new purpose in their lives, Millard and Linda Fuller arrive at Koinonia.


The concept of partnership housing and the Fund for Humanity are created. Partnership housing centered on those in need of adequate shelter working side by side with volunteers to build decent, affordable homes. The houses would be built at no profit. New homeowners’ house payments would be combined with no-interest loans provided by supporters and money earned by fundraising to create the Fund, which would then be used to build more homes.


The first partnership house is completed in Sumter County, Georgia.


Millard and Linda Fuller move from Koinonia, taking the principles of partnership housing and the Fund for Humanity to Africa.


The Fullers return from Africa, and Habitat for Humanity is formed with headquarters in Americus, Georgia.

Construction begins on the first Habitat house, built in San Antonio, Texas.

The first partnership houses are completed in Zaire.


Clive Rainey joins Habitat for Humanity as its first volunteer.

Habitat for Humanity International is formally incorporated under the laws of the state of Georgia.


Habitat celebrates fifth anniversary, having built 342 houses in 14 U.S. and seven international locations.


Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his wife Rosalynn join Habitat’s efforts. The first Jimmy Carter Work Project is held in New York City.


Habitat for Humanity International celebrates 10th anniversary with a 1,000-mile walk from Americus, Georgia, to Kansas City, Missouri.


Baylor University in Waco, Texas, becomes the first Habitat campus chapter.

Marist School in Atlanta, Georgia, becomes the first secondary school campus chapter.


Abilene, Texas, becomes the 500th U.S. location where Habitat builds.


Habitat’s 10,000th house is built in Atlanta, Georgia.