Inside the Housing Forum Europe and Central Asia

Adela Kuci

The Housing Forum Europe & Central Asia took place in Budapest from the 4th to the 6th of April; over 150 delegates from 48 countries attended the conference. Part of this big family included six students from McDaniel College who volunteered. Their part included helping the organizers on small things, such as putting name tags in alphabetical order, shirt packaging, and labeling. The students had the chance to be in the sessions, interact with the delegates, make friends, gain experience, and get ideas.

Housing is a very important thing in each person’s life and to the prosperity and the future of countries. Better housing leads to better health, better education, and better self-identity. That everyone has the right to a proper house was the main theme of the forum. What can we do to help the less fortunate people? Many things can be done, but what is needed is good will and a joining together of the work of NGO (Non Governmental Organizations) community, governments, and businesses.

“We are committed a common vision for housing. By 2020, we would like to see our children grow up in inclusive, secure, diverse and energy-efficient places, safe against natural disasters. One way of achieving this vision is through increased collaboration,” said Don Haszczyn, area vice-president for Habitat for Humanity.

Over the three days of the conference, many ideas were heard, a lot of advice received. It was good to see people from all over the world to work so hard and have so many good ideas on how to help each other, exchange these ideas with each other and look for solutions to be undertaken. After the hard work during the forum, there was a dinner cruise, a memorable evening in a boat across the Danube. Organizers, delegates, volunteers, all together to celebrate their work and have a good time together.

McDaniel students want to thank Barbara Thomas, the project manager of the forum and a McDaniel College trustee, and Rosalind Harber, the program assistant of the forum, for their great job and for giving us the possibility to be at this forum and for the wonderful time passed together.

Thank you.

Image: McDaniel student volunteers Virag Kiss, Adela Kuci, and Nariman Al-Atrash.

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