By helping build a house, you are not only building a house but also a future for a family. Many families are barely surviving on a day-to-day basis and simply don’t have the funds to build a house. These families are living in make shift houses that provide very little shelter, leak during rains and are unsafe for their children. Most people just need a little hand up in life and thrive knowing that people actually care about them. Building a house for a family can give them a sense of pride as well as a good nights’ sleep reducing illness and injury.
We build stilted houses in areas in and around Siem Reap. Due to the availability and cost of timber in Cambodia, our houses are constructed from concrete stumps, with wooden floor boards, steel frames and tin surrounds. Houses have lock up windows and doors to ensure the safety of the family and their possessions. Families we build for are generally in extreme need, destitute and include widows/widowers with children, people with life threatening illnesses or on a wage that makes them unable to provide for their family. We access the poorest families with the help of referrals; as well as meeting and profiling them, we also speak with the Chiefs of the villages to make sure we are helping those that need it most.
Where possible we also carry out repairs to houses if it is more economical than building a new house and the house is structurally stable. This option cannot only save money but also means less inconvenience to families who usually have to move to temporary accommodation while the new house is being built on the current site.
MORE THAN A HOME
Community builds consist of more than just building houses; toilets and wells are also a major part of helping families change their circumstances. By providing sanitation, we are stopping the spread of disease and preventable illness as well as teaching better hygiene practices.
For every house we build, if there is sufficient money and space, we also provide the family with a toilet and clean drinking water via a well if they do not already have one. If the house block doesn’t have enough space to accommodate this, we will speak with the village chief to find an alternative, which may include building a community toilet block or well that can be shared with other families in the community. Obviously, this is not an ideal situation however sharing amongst a number of families is a huge improvement on the current situation and is not an uncommon practice in Cambodia.
The costs associated with a Community Build:
Cost to build one house: $2,000
Cost to build one toilet: $500
Cost to build one well: $280
If there is a surplus of money left over from your donation for any reason it will be carried over to a community pool that will help with future build projects.