Record amount take part in Hope Challenge

International housing charity Habitat for Humanity said over 170 people are taking part in its fundraising event this year.

Teams of around four to six people, primarily from the construction and mortgage sectors, will be hiking through the Peak District and heading to Whitmore Lea Farm in the Edale Valley to take part in the challenge on Friday 1 July.

Teams will build and sleep in their own shelters for two nights, complete a trek of up to 12 miles and take part in challenges designed to test teamwork, resourcefulness and creativity.

Habitat for Humanity said the sleeping shelters will be similar to many of the houses of the 1.6bn people around the world who lack a safe, decent place to live.

Each team is tasked with raising £2,470, which the charity said is enough to help two families of approximately five people to escape poverty housing.

Emma Walton, Habitat for Humanity's Great Britain events co-ordinator, said: "This July we've got more people than ever before coming to take part in Hope Challenge, and they're people who will be doing something different and wonderful. During the weekend they'll be experiencing life in a hand-made shelter, like millions of people live in for their whole lives. The money they raise will help families all over the world to build themselves out of poverty, through enabling them to build or renovate safe, decent homes."

As part of its UK programme, Habitat for Humanity is building 32 low-cost homes on a 2.2-acre site on Kingsley Road in Granby-Toxteth, Liverpool.

Building on the land, donated by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese, is currently suspended as the charity is currently undergoing a period of review and change due to the economic downturn and cuts to public spending.

So far, nine of the 32 homes are completed as Habitat for Humanity is concentrating on schemes in Banbury, Oxfordshire, and Southwark in London.

The Granby-Toxteth project, which received significant funding from NewHeartlands, the Housing Market Renewal Initiative on Merseyside, involves future homeowners working alongside volunteers, devoting 500 hours of 'sweat equity' in lieu of a £10,000 down-payment on their home.

The charity is seeking partnerships with housing organisations and in need of volunteers for the Granby-Toxteth site.

The fourth annual Hope Challenge in the Peak District is sponsored this year by the National House-Building Council, Lovell and CB Richard Ellis.

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Great charity, great days out

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