Island News

Villagers In Maritime Zone Will Soon Have Decent And Affordable Homes

Habitat for Humanity’s activities in Fiji range from new house construction to helping families rebuild after cyclones and other disasters to improving water and sanitation access in various communities.
09 Mar 2020 10:14
Villagers In Maritime Zone Will Soon Have Decent And Affordable Homes
Habitat for Humanity Fiji, Shelter programme PFID carpenters weaving bamboo for the wall cladding. Photo: Habitat for Humanity Fiji

Communities within our provinces of the Maritime Zone including Rotuma will soon have an opportunity to own simple, decent and affordable housing.

This is thanks to the New Zealand government and generosity from Habitat for Humanity NZ, through its Fijian counterpart.

Habitat Fiji’s national director Masi Latianara said: “There is another project called ‘Stand Strong’ that is funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade from the New Zealand Government.

“It embodies a new strategic approach by Habitat for Humanity to focus on increasing the access to technical expertise to disaster threatened Fijian communities  through shelter specific training in disaster risk reduction.”

The Stand Strong project is a five-year project (2018-2022), which came to conception after the 2016 Category Five TC Winston caused significant loss of life and destruction of houses near and in the path of the cyclone in Fiji.

“It will be focused on rural communities through Kadavu, Lomaiviti, Lau, and Yasawas and all the way to Rotuma.”

Volunteers from the Habitat for Humanity Fiji work on their various home building projects at sites around Fiji. Photos: Habitat for Humanity Fiji

Volunteers from the Habitat for Humanity Fiji work on their various home building projects at sites around Fiji. Photos: Habitat for Humanity Fiji

Habitat for Humanity’s activities in Fiji range from new house construction to helping families rebuild after cyclones and other disasters to improving water and sanitation access in various communities.

Habitat homes are typically built with a combination of locally supplied timber, concrete, and metal roofing. Families who partner with Habitat also contribute their own labour to build their new homes.

“The project for Kadavu, Yasawa, Lau Group, Lomaiviti Province and Rotuma is about building resilience to natural disasters and it has a number of components and one of them is called Participatory Approach to Safe Shelter Awareness.” Mr Latianara said.

“It is a training programme that is delivered in eight (8) days.”

Mr Latianara said it was now about facilitating discussions within the community and for them to identify threats within their environment if there was a disaster looming.

“To identify the threat and issues that come out of that and then come up with a solution that they can get somebody to fund or fund it themselves,” he said.

The second component is “Built Back Safer Training”.

He said this was basically construction training and that would be to build a house as part of the training and the house remained in the community so villagers could see how it was built.

“We cover eight key areas and it starts from the foundation going up to the roof and also covers how you should site your house. Like where you should have it,” Mr Latianara.

Volunteers from the Habitat for Humanity Fiji work on their various home building projects at sites around Fiji. Photos: Habitat for Humanity Fiji

Volunteers from the Habitat for Humanity Fiji work on their various home building projects at sites around Fiji. Photos: Habitat for Humanity Fiji

Training programme

He has released their schedule to the provinces and Yasawa islands.

Habitat for Humanity International is a non-profit Christian organisation that brings families, volunteers and resources together to build simple, decent, and affordable housing in low-income areas.

Houses are sold at no profit and owners provide hard work, a down payment, and ongoing interest-free payments.

Edited by Percy Kean

Feedbackwati.talebula@fijisun.com.fj


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