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Monday, May 29, 2006 

Kingston conference to focus on social housing in the region

Monday, May 29, 2006

SOCIAL housing in the Caribbean will be discussed on June 19 and 20 when builders, social development workers, financiers, contractors and construction professionals gather at the Jamaica Conference Centre in downtown Kingston for the 2006 Housing Conference.

The conference is being hosted by the National Housing Trust (NHT), as part of its 30th anniversary celebrations.

According to a press statement from the NHT, the lack of and poor housing was one of the most important issues facing governments in the Caribbean.

"Since venturing into social housing, the National Housing Trust has invested billions in social housing projects such as the Inner-City Housing Project and Relocation 2000.

Successive governments have long recognised the need to address the escalation in sub-standard housing, particularly in the cities and have implemented a range of solutions. However, many are still searching for ways to minimise the costs of these solutions," the NHT statement said.

The conference will draw on the expertise of speakers from the region and local agencies, who will offer insights into a number of key issues including the sociology and design of inner-city communities, increasing social and political capital, the challenges of housing the poor and the national approaches to social housing in the Caribbean.

Plenary speakers include Professor Patricia Anderson (Jamaica), Dr Carol Archer (Jamaica), Senorita Martha Garcilosa de la Vega Pena (Cuba) and Karen Charlton (Canada).

In addition to plenary sessions, the conference will host workshops which will include case studies on the NHT's Inner-City Housing Project, the Guadeloupean Social Housing System and informal housing and the environment.

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