28 Feb Global Housing Foundation Incorporates Innovative
Global Housing Foundation Incorporates Innovative
Workforce Housing Solutions For New Projects Which Will Integrate with Cities to Shape the Future
Global Housing Foundation (GHF) participated in the Ninth Session of the World Urban Forum which took place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The foundation was among World Leaders in attendance which included heads of states, top government officials as well as representatives of the civil society, experts and the private sector, to discuss policies and actions, synergies and innovative solutions for the implementation of the New Urban Agenda, and to review and exchange ideas and mechanisms for its effective application.
The World Urban Forum (WUF) is the world’s premier conference on cities and human settlements whose purpose is to localize and accelerate the implementation of the UN Habitat New Urban Agenda to achieve Sustainable Development Goals. It was the first Forum to convene since the adoption of the New Urban Agenda (NUA) at Habitat III which took place in Quito, Ecuador in 2016. The World Urban Forum is a non-legislative United Nations conference which attracts premier world experts and leaders for their expertise and input.
The mission of the Global Housing Foundation is, in conjunction with UN-Habitat, to bring together the resources necessary to create housing for the working poor. During the WUF9 conference, Ms. Maimunah Mohd Sharif, UN-Habitat Executive Director, attended “The City of the Future:People First” event. GHF Chairman Owen Gwyn and GHF President Sharon Young highlighted the Real Estate Developers Alliance Program developed by the Global Housing Foundation. Senior Past World President of FIABCI, the International Real Estate Federation, Dato’ Alan Tong of Malaysia, a GHF supporter stated, “I am very impressed with the role of UN-Habitat in their progressive approaches to worldwide housing shortages. Ms. Sharif is coordinating UN stakeholders to join together in the cause. Malaysia pledges to catch up with affordable housing initiatives and help toward her mission.”
“Workforce and affordable housing should be an essential part of all city planning as well as integrated with sustainable development plans for communities on a global basis. When you create solutions to solve housing insecurity within a community, you tackle the issues and develop positive outcomes which address the poverty of a city and its residents. This, in turn, leads to a healthier quality of life. The Global Housing Foundation is committed to seeking solutions for our new projects moving forward which align with the implementation of the New Urban Agenda and which will help to shape the future of city development so workforce housing solutions are effectively addressed,” explained Global Housing Foundation Chairman Owen Gwyn.
The WUF was hosted by the Malaysian Government and the City of Kuala Lumpur and coordinated by the WUF Secretariat, which is part of UN-Habitat. It included attendees from 164 countries with participation of 36 United Nations systems organizations, making it the largest event on urban development following the adoption of the New Urban Agenda. It was also the first Forum to focus on the implementation of the Agenda.
The WUF theme was “Cities for All, Cities 2030: Implementing the New Urban Agenda” with over 500 events focused on the theme as it relates to the vision of cities in the year 2030 with a focus on Sustainable Development Goal 11. This goal’s objective is that nobody is left behind from urban advantages and opportunities. In 2015 the United Nations Member States adopted The Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development which includes universal objectives which go beyond traditional areas of development. The Agenda establishes goals and targets addressing challenges and emerging concerns including elements that are a fundamental part of everyone’s lives. It also focuses on the root causes of poverty and inequality which undermine the achievement of the full human potential in harmony with a healthy environment.
The participation of the Global Housing Foundation with WU9 followed the successful completion of Project Panama and a recent program in which The Global Housing Foundation (“GHF”) in partnership with UN Habitat hosted an enthusiastic program at the United Nations in New York City with keynote speaker Ellis Henican, a Pulitzer Prize Winner, columnist, popular commentary on media outlets including CNN and the bestselling author of a dozen books. Bringing together a select group of top international influencers within the global real estate community as well as other related industries, the event helped GHF identify opportunities to advance industry knowledge and further the discussion on the importance of housing for the working poor throughout the world.
“Combining the feedback and outcome of our recent program at the United Nations in New York with the information which was derived from the World Urban Forum, has enabled Global Housing Foundation to pinpoint requirements we will actively seek to fulfill with our upcoming development projects,” explained Global Housing Foundation President Sharon Young. “Access to clean and safe housing is one of the most important fundamental necessities for a thriving society yet there is a considerable lack of housing available for workforce families throughout the world. This is an issue that must be addressed. There is not one solution which fits all challenges facing the lack of stable housing which is why strong, solid urban design and city planning as well as sustainable solutions and timely, state-of-the -art innovative tactics need to be explored and integrated into effective development plans which result in strong cities throughout the world,” she added.
At the end of the Forum, the Kuala Lumpur Declaration on Cities 2030 was released based on reports from the main sessions. The Declaration calls for the deployment of all efforts, means and resources available towards the operationalization of the concept of cities for all, ensuring that all inhabitants, of present and future generations, without discrimination of any kind, are able to inhabit and produce just, safe, healthy, accessible, affordable, resilient and sustainable cities and human settlements to foster prosperity and quality of life for all. UN-Habitat Executive Director Maimunah Mohd Sharif explained that the Declaration will accelerate implementation of the New Urban Agenda (NUA). WUF10 will take place in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates in February 2020. The conference is held in a different city of the world, every two years and convened by UN-Habitat, the United Nations Programme on Human Settlements.
About the Global Housing Foundation:
The Global Housing Foundation is a 501(c)3 launched in 1999 when its founder and United Nations Scroll of Honor recipient, René Frank took up a challenge from the United Nations Commission on Human Settlements (UNCHS) as to why the private real estate industry did not do more to help solve the housing crisis around the world. The foundation’s mission is, in conjunction with UN-Habitat, to bring together the resources necessary to create housing for the working poor.