Co-Founder Of Habitat For Humanity Dies At 74
RENEE MONTAGNE, host:
In this country, we've been hearing a lot about the housing crisis in recent months. Millard Fuller was a man who, decades ago, believed there was a housing crisis and devoted the rest of his life to doing something about it. Fuller died yesterday.
He was a self-made millionaire who founded Habitat for Humanity in 1976 with his wife. The organization turned poor people into homeowners through no-interest loans and sweat equity. That required people to help build their own houses.
The Christian charity grew into a worldwide network that relies heavily on volunteers, and has built more than 300,000 homes. Millard Fuller was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor in 1996.
He had a falling out with Habitat for Humanity in 2005 and started a new organization called The Fuller Center for Housing in Americus, which does the same kind of work.
Former President Jimmy Carter, a fellow Southerner and a long time Habitat volunteer, called Millard Fuller one of the most extraordinary people I have ever know. He was 74 years old when he died.
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