He’s not only a Golden Globe winner and film producer, but a dad to six, husband to famous actress Angelina Jolie, and an incredible inspiration for all “do-gooders” seeking to lead by example and positively benefit the world.
The famous actor Brad Pitt has been credited in the past for his charitable givings – most notably the amount of work and money given to New Orlean’s victims in 2010 from Hurricane Katrina. His founded charity Make it Right donated over $16 million to rebuild green homes and offer assistance.
Pitt has several times diluted his generosity, however, claiming that “people give me too much credit for bringing smart people together,” and humbly continues to live his life in a way that suits him while still striving to be a part of a better world. In collaboration with his wife, Angeline Jolie, the two also started the Jolie-Pitt foundation which aims to eradicate extreme rural poverty, protect natural resources, and conserve wildlife.
There seems to be no limit to the incredible generosity and positive impact the two have, and now his charity Make it Right is doing even more incredible work. Pitt’s organization has been partnering with Fort Peck, Montana Sioux and Assiniboine nation tribes to rebuild build 20 super green homes for residents whose income levels are at or below 60 percent the area’s mean income – a percentage of the homes reserved for senior citizens and disabled veterans.
Wrote communications director Taylor Royle, “We hear stories from people who have nine families living in a five bedroom home and take ‘sleeping shifts’ to share the limited beds. Most homes are smaller, one or two bedrooms.” She continued, “We [met] a woman who shares a two-bedroom home with her elderly mother and her brother’s family—she and her three children sleep on the floor in the living room.”
Just in Fort Deck – America’s ninth-largest Native American reservation – there are over 6,000 tribal members living on the 2-million acre reservation. In effect from the overcrowding, 600 are still waiting to obtain housing. Therefore it’s clear that there is definite need for assistance.
Now with a Low Income Housing Tax Credit Rent-to-Own program, residents in the Make it Right American Indian homes will be able to buy their new green homes after 15 years of renting. And they are not just ordinary homes: extreme thought and planning has gone into designing their sustainability features and how to best retain cultural architecture.
Reported NationSwell, “These LEED Platinum, solar-powered homes will have three or four bedrooms and two or three bathrooms each, and built with certified Cradle-to-Cradle vendors, which means they’re developed responsibly and use reclaimed materials. It’s certainly a big improvement from some of the current homes on the reservation, which are rife with black mold and structural problems, resulting in high utility bills due to inefficient design.”
Not only that, “The home designs reflect traditional life ways while exemplifying deep green public-impact architecture,” according to Architecture for Humanity architect Nathaniel Corum.
Using participatory democratic principles, Make it Right organizers met with families and community leaders about their needs and their vision for the new homes. They also attained information of how the builders can preserve the culture of the Assiniboine and Sioux tribes, such as doorways facing east or north and using tribally significant colors.
With unemployment in these areas recorded to be about 50% (according to The Washington Post), the work this organization is doing is no doubt going to positively affect many peoples’ lives. The low employment rate has caused for almost 75% of the area’s children to live in poverty, and such situation has continued the cycle of abuse the First Nation’s People are inflicted with in these communities (including abundant use of alcohol and methamphetamine).
Make it Right donors, employees, and volunteers are giving people a safe place to live, are promoting sustainable living and solar energy, and exist to help those in need of reconstruction after natural disaster. Supporters of this organization can ‘donate’ green gifts which include: solar panels, paint, native plants, Energy Star appliances, and more!
In effect of implementing sustainable technologies, the receiving residents will experience lower energy bills and security of mind for the future that is to come.
All in all, Pitt and the organization members recognize that much more is needed to help restore and provide balance to the reservations, but they are doing their part and taking initiative to help Make it Right.