Housing: A Basic Need
As we walk alongside people and communities in their journey of empowerment, one of the practical needs we come across so often, is the need for basic housing.
One of our favourite things to be involved in is the privilege of providing housing for people who desperately need it.
Many of the families we work with have no stable home at all - they must rent, which takes up what little income they can earn, and find themselves moving from place to place when they can't afford the rent.
For those that do own a plot of land and have their own house, many of these are falling apart, with leaking roofs, dirt floors and no proper security. Most of these homes are also just a place to sleep - there's no kitchen, toilet or washroom.
This has huge impacts for families - they lack physical security for themselves and their children. They are unable to keep their houses clean and hygienic due to the dirt flooring and lack of proper areas for cooking, washing and going to the toilet - this leads to sickness and poor health. It leaves families unable to provide other basic needs for their children like food, clothing and school fees, with all their income taken up in rent or trying to repair or improve their house. Houses in disrepair are easily damaged by the heavy rains and flooding that happens in certain areas.
Even more than all these outward impacts, lack of adequate housing takes away from a family's dignity and their ability to connect and be part of their community, as they are unable to invite people to their home. The stress of the family's situation impacts students' ability to study, and the burden to fetch water and study by candlelight compromises their study time. This is something we often see in our Education Sponsorship Program.
What's the Issue?
CBL work together with our local partners to provide housing for families most in need. For those who have no home at all, we liaise with local community leaders to provide some land (in eSwatini) or purchase a small plot of land and build a house for that family (in Rwanda). For those who have some land of their own and a basic building, we repair the existing house and add on the separate kitchen, toilet and washroom. Where possible, we connect electricity and running water to the home, or provide and install a water tank.
Houses in Rwanda are made from mud bricks, and then sealed with cement. All our housing projects include cement flooring, concrete render, iron sheet roofing, drainage systems, a metal, lockable front door, glass windows with bars, painting inside and out, as well as making sure the building is big enough for the family, with sufficient bedrooms, and a separate area for sitting together and eating.
Houses in eSwatini are made from cement blocks, wood and corrugated iron. All our housing projects include cement flooring, concrete render, iron sheet roofing, drainage systems, a lockable front door, glass windows, painting inside and out, as well as making sure the building can accommodate the family.
What We Do
Our housing projects are a team effort - with CBL and our local partners working together with the family and the local community.
The family and the community provide labour and sometimes a few building materials if they are able. The project employs local people in the construction process, and so the whole community benefits from the project, along with the family who is receiving the home.
It's A Team Effort
Join The Team
A key part of the team are our supporters who donate the funds needed to make these projects a reality! Each house in eSwatini costs between $5,000 - $6,000 and includes a water tank and pit latrine.
Houses in Rwanda cost between $10,000 - $15,000 depending on what is already there, the size of house needed, and opportunities for connecting water and electricity.
There is plenty of need for housing - we are only limited by funding! Your support matters, help us build the next house!