11.1) By 2030, ensure access for all to adequate, safe and affordable housing and basic services, and upgrade slums
In January 2012, the housing social enterprise ¡Échale! a tu Casa joined the Business Call to Action with a commitment to provide US$3 million in microfinance lending in order to help 25,000 families with minimum wage of under US$5 per day to finance the construction of their houses by 2017. And through an assisted self-building program, communities are trained with the appropriate technical capacities to build their own homes. By harnessing innovations in construction technology and finance, the company has streamlined the self-build process: 30,000 houses have already been built and more than 150,000 home improvements made in Mexico alone. The microfinance initiative will allow an additional 1,500 homes to be built and 6,000 home improvements made, which would not have been possible without affordable financing. The technology has also been exported to Belize, Egypt, Haiti, Nicaragua and the United Arab Emirates. Houses built through ¡Échale! are also environmentally sustainable as they are constructed of earth blocks and all are equipped to harvest rainwater, reducing the use of municipal water by 20 per cent. Additionally, there are significant social impacts in participating communities, including creation of five temporary jobs for each house that is built. ¡Échale! estimates that 200,000 people have gained temporary employment for the duration of the construction process.