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Washington, D.C. — Build Change and the World Bank are launching a new initiative — the Global Program for Resilient Housing — aimed at formalizing global development approaches to providing safe, sustainable housing in regions prone to climate stress and natural disasters.

The new program will be officially announced at a luncheon event held at the World Bank headquarters in Washington, D.C. on October 3 that will include a presentation by Build Change CEO Elizabeth Hausler on the potential for huge impact if governments invest more in retrofitting and prioritizing improvements aimed at improving the survivability of structures during extreme events.

World Bank officials have said the initiative will leverage machine learning and geospatial technology to inform policy actions in the developing world. The World Bank, which aims to reduce poverty and the ill effects it has on people worldwide, also hopes the program will help its staff and partners to develop a pipeline of new projects that increase the resilience of the existing housing stock against both natural disasters and climate change related events.

The new program marks an effort to coordinate global development policy aimed at improving existing housing through bottom-up strengthening measures, access to financing, and use of advanced technologies. These techniques, pioneered by Build Change with support from its partners and funders, have proven effective in bringing resilience to communities in the path of major storms or situated in regions prone to earthquakes, climate effects, or other natural disasters.

Build Change has been working to deliver safe, sustainable housing to regions of the developing world affected by hurricanes, earthquakes, and other natural disasters since its founding in 2004. The organization’s work has won awards and support from a wide range of donors.  More importantly, Build Change has changed the lives of tens of thousands in Colombia, Indonesia, the Philippines, China, and Nepal by rebuilding and/or retrofitting thousands of homes to modern, resilient standards designed to survive future stress.

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