Billings homebuilder launches project to help businesses around the world

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Posted at 11:25 AM, Sep 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-18 13:25:52-04

McCall Homes celebrated a groundbreaking in Billings Friday for its third house for Homes For Hope, an organization that helps people with businesses in less wealthy parts of the world.

"We're trying to go into some of the most impoverished areas of the world, and develop entrepreneurs who are trying to start businesses but they don't have access to capital," said Greg McCall, McCall Homes co-owner. "They have great ideas, but they just happen to live in a country that is so impoverished that they don't have the same opportunities that we have here."

Homes For Hope is part of Hope International. Here's how it works: the builders first identify a project, then contractors and suppliers reduce or eliminate fees that are then donated to provide training and other skills for the impoverished.

"They don't just attack poverty from a financial standpoint," McCall said. "They attack it from a spiritual standpoint, a health standpoint, and they try to treat the entire human being as opposed to just the issue."

Billings Mayor Bill Cole helped with groundbreaking on the home in McCall Homes Annafeld Subdivision.

"Here in Billings, the trades folk came out to support the organization," Cole said. "They donate time and money, and materials to build a house that can then be sold to raise funds."

"The people that we're working with domestically here as they're building homes, they're all entrepreneurs too," said Matthew Baehr, Hope For Homes executive director. "And they can relate to the people that we're serving overseas. They know what it means to work hard to build businesses to take care of their families."

Baehr said his organization helps people across Asia, Africa, Eastern Europe and South America, along with the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

"The best way out of poverty is a good job," Baehr said. "We want to be known as the building industry's response to global poverty."

"We invest in their dreams by giving them a hand up rather than hand out," McCall said.

"You know there's a shortage of hope in our world today," Cole said. "And on a beautiful day with people of goodwill, this was just such an uplifting event."