Housing poverty in Poland

Home renovations, upgrades and advocacy to tackle unsafe housing and overcrowdedness
  • +1,000 families served +1,000 families served
  • +1,700 volunteers hosted +1,700 volunteers hosted
  • Projects: upgrades for energy efficiency, home renovation & repairs, advocacy Projects: upgrades for energy efficiency, home renovation & repairs, advocacy

We have been tackling housing poverty in Poland since 1992. To date, our small team has helped over 1,000 families.

Habitat for Humanity Poland was the first branch in Europe, which operates in Warsaw and Gliwice. Our local team responds to poor housing through a number of activities such as the construction of new houses, renovations of apartments, advocacy (promoting social housing policies with the government) as well as microloan programmes.

A dire lack of housing

According to the national statistics, 6.5 million people in Poland (15% of the population) live in poverty housing, i.e have no place to live or are living in substandard conditions (with no bathrooms and toilets, no central heating or unsafe buildings).

Poland has the lowest rate of homes for its population in Europe, and as a consequence:

  • Over 3.2 million families have to share a flat with others
  • Nearly 12 million Poles live in overcrowded facilities
  • 44% of young people (25-34 years of age) still live with their parents, with every third of them never moving out to live independently.

Population at risk

Housing poverty in Poland affects single parents and families with many children (3 plus) in particular. Other affected groups include:

  • People with disabilities
  • Homeless people living in shelters
  • Young families
  • The elderly

Approximately 60% of the population cannot afford to meet their housing needs on commercial housing market and is in need of support.

Read more about housing poverty in Poland

How we address the need in Poland

Our activities in Poland range from building new affordable houses to renovating condominium blocks and advocacy initiatives. The renovation programme in particular, has turned into a viable answer to our long search for an efficient way to help more families in need. Renovation projects have been completed throughout the country in partnership with homeowners’ associations.

Key facts & figures

  • Population: 38.52 million
  • Urbanisation: 60.5% live in cities
  • Life expectancy: 77.6 years
  • Unemployment rate: 10.5%
  • Population living below poverty line: 17.3%