Second Chance program
The United Nations’ Committee for the Right of the Child have also called upon Hungary to ensure that children are not separated from their parents because of financial reasons or lack of housing. Currently there is no legislation or provision in Hungary that would prohibit the eviction of families with children without ensuring appropriate accommodation. Thus each family in danger of eviction is also risking to lose their children. For some of them, temporary family shelters may offer a short-term solution, but unfortunately only a very few families can get an affordable home even from these institutions, therefore they move from one institution to another, and with time the family falls apart, parents end up on the streets and children in state care.
What do we raise our voice for?
In our Second Chance Program we help families who lost their housing and have been living in temporary shelters already for 1 or 2 years. Habitat refurbishes public rental housing currently not in a condition fit for living in, with the help of municipalities and volunteers. Thus we allow these families to have a safe home, sustainable on the long term.
Flats that can be included in the program are selected together with the municipality.
A detailed refurbishment plan is prepared for each flat. The renewing work is guided and controlled by the construction project supervisor of Habitat.
The future tenant families and volunteers also take part in the refurbishment work, contractors are employed for tasks requiring professional knowledge.
Families receive social worker support before and after moving in from the local temporary family shelters that cooperate with Habitat. In 2015, with the cooperation with the Social Rehabilitation Foundation, the support of Procter & Gamble, and the help of the Municipal Office of Zugló, we included 2 families in the program. They could move in to a public rental flat in the XIV. District of Budapest. We would like to expand our program to other districts as well. For this, we continuously seek supporters.
Our pilot program introduces a solution that works. We would like to get more and more municipalities to join the program, and that the government would take part in solving this problem by establishing affordable public rental housing.