Press Room

GMAC Helps Make Homeownership a Reality for Outstanding Habitat for Humanity Volunteer

Aug 3, 2006

DETROIT – GMAC Financial Services and Detroit Habitat for Humanity are teaming up to build a new home for Dorena Smith and her family. Throughout the summer GMAC volunteers will assist with the construction of Smith's new two-story home. The house is located on Detroit's west side.



Several GMAC volunteers have already worked on the home, and the family is hoping for an early completion. To help meet that goal, on Wed., Aug. 2, the GMAC marketing team traded in their business attire and laptops for tee shirts, hammers and paint brushes to help move the interior work along. And, today GMAC executives and interns will work together on the house, allowing the opportunity for some mentoring while giving back to the community at the same time.

For nearly a decade, members from every part of the GMAC family, including employees, leadership and dealers, have contributed time and effort to build homes across the world through Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI). Since 2002, GMAC's financial support and volunteer labor has helped HFHI build and rehabilitate more than 100 simple, decent homes.

This year GMAC will contribute more than $500,000 and hundreds of GMAC volunteers will help to build eight homes in Atlanta; Dallas; Detroit; Houston; Jacksonville, Fla.; Macomb, Mich.; Phoenix; and St. Louis. In addition, several of GMAC's subsidiary business units and local offices will provide volunteer labor and funding for builds in their communities.

“GMAC shares Habitat for Humanity's vision of homeownership, believing that everyone deserves a decent place to call home,” said Bill Muir, GMAC president. “Dorena Smith, and her family, define what homeownership is all about: hard work, responsibility and dedication, and I'm proud to see so many from our GMAC family, including our dealers, take part in helping make Dorena's dream a reality.”

Habitat houses are sold to partner families at no profit and financed with affordable loans. Upon completion of their new home, homeowners make a down payment and start to pay the required no-interest, monthly mortgage.

Smith, 34, of Detroit learned she could qualify for a Habitat home while volunteering for HFHI in 2004. She has spent nearly 700 hours – more than double the HFHI requirement – working on Habitat builds in Detroit . She will continue to volunteer with Habitat for Humanity after she takes possession of her new home.

“We are grateful for GMAC's continued support and confidence in our organization,” said Tim Hudson, development director, Habitat for Humanity Detroit. “Each year we look forward to working with organizations like GMAC to build homes for families in need, which also aids in the revitalization and livelihood of Detroit and its surrounding communities.”

GMAC supports efforts that strengthen communities, particularly those focused on housing and shelter, financial literacy, empowerment and growth, with a special consideration for efforts that support minority groups and key geographic markets.

About GMAC

GMAC Financial Services provides automotive financing, commercial finance, insurance and mortgage products, and real estate services, and has a presence in more than 40 nations. Since 1919, GMAC has extended more than $1.4 trillion in credit to finance more than 162 million vehicles. For more information about GMAC visit

About Habitat for Humanity Detroit

Habitat for Humanity Detroit is an affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, a non-profit ecumenical, Christian housing ministry providing decent, safe, affordable housing to low-income families in Detroit . Since 1986, the Detroit affiliate has rehabbed and/or built new houses for 200 families and revitalized four communities following its mission to eliminate substandard housing in our community. Financial and in-kind contributions and the use of volunteers for labor keep Habitat for Humanity homes affordable for low-income families. For more information please visit or call (313)521-6691.

About Habitat for Humanity International

Habitat for Humanity International, based in Americus, Ga., is an ecumenical Christian ministry dedicated to eliminating poverty housing. By the end of 2005, Habitat will have built its 200,000 th house and more than one million people will be living in Habitat homes they helped build and are buying through no-profit, zero-interest mortgages.

Jennifer Zajac
GMAC Global Communications
313.665.1133 (office)
313.580-6852 (mobile)

Michael Stoller
GMAC Global Communications
313.665.0955 (office)
313.720.8036 (mobile)

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