Brian Elliot the CEO of Habitat For Humanity Heartland Ontario explained the three main functions of  Habitat for Humanity and their impact.  Habitat's principal functions are 1) Build projects, 2)ReStores, and 3)Family Services.  
The Heartland Division employees 75 people and hosts hundreds of volunteers at their projects.  Brian explained the lasting impact of home ownership.  65% of their new owners come from social housing and 60% of those access social services.  With home ownership the reliance of social services is reduced and the educational achievement of children in the program increases.
Each family must put in 500 hours of service to the project or community service.  The homes usually take 6 months to complete from concept, land purchase to build completion.  The mortgage is on the house is interest free and his held by Habitat.  The revenue from the mortgage is used to finance further projects.  The houses are priced at fair market value.  The mortgage are based on ability to pay and there is no downpayment. New owners are given an orientation to home ownership which includes budgeting, training on maintaining a home, and how to be a good neighbour.