Thursday, March 26, 2015

Youth Build - Habitat for Humanity Nepal

Between March 17 and 21, 2015, Habitat for Humanity (HfH) Nepal took part in the fourth annual Habitat Youth Build (HYB), a Habitat for Humanity Asia Pacific initiative dedicated to partnering with young people to create change. This year, fifteen different Asian chapters took part in HYB to combat poverty housing through building houses and providing education. HfH Nepal’s goal was mobilize 500,000 youth volunteers to build 5,000 houses. This year was a spectacular success, and this goal was easily surpassed. 7,491 houses were constructed or improved thanks to the hard work of 624,244 volunteers. 

HfH Nepal’s partner organizations were instrumental in the success of Youth Build 2015. They conducted an amazing amount of different builds and training sessions to provide decent homes for people in need, and to educate them on construction as well as hygiene and sanitation. Over 6,500 houses were constructed during Youth Build, and more than 850 were renovated, changing the lives of thousands of families around the country. 

The Rural Women Development Centre (RWDC), encouraged local people to learn construction techniques as part of the HYB, and helped to build over a thousand homes for people in need. In addition, they mobilized an amazing 285,000 volunteers, more than any other partner organization. In Kailali, the Kisan Multipurpose Co-operative Ltd taught people to make bricks and use mud plaster to build sturdy homes. Kisan also helped built 460 homes, giving locals a chance to apply their new skills.

In Morang, Jeevan Bikash educated children about the importance of keeping their environment clean and promoted personal hygiene. They also built 1,724 houses, the most of any partner organization. Mahuli Samudayik Laghubitta Bittiya Sanstha in Saptari and Kisan Nawa Pravita delivered WASH training to students and taught local people proper construction techniques.

Top Row:  A NawaPrativa build, A group from one of the Kisan Multipurpose Co-operative projects, Students practice washing their hands after receiving training from JeevanBikash in Morang.
Bottom Row:  A house constructed by the Rural Women Development Centre, Some of the students who received WASH training from Mahuli Samudayik Laghubitta Bittiya Sanstha

In addition, a number of Habitat Youth Build Ambassadors reached out and added their support to the Youth Build Campaign. Santosh Shah traveled to Sunsari to help fire victims. The well known T.V. journalist Prem Baniya helped construct houses in Ghorahi, Dang and participated in a press conference to raise awareness about poverty housing in Nepal. Reecha Sharma, the actress, painted houses in Kailali. Nirnaya Nsk not only helped in construction in Kavre, but also entertained the community by performing songs. He also advocated for better housing in Nepal. 

Clockwise from top:  PremBaniya helps construct a house in Ghorahi,  NirnayaNsk, works to build a house in Kavre, Santosh Shah helps the  families of the fire victims

Youth Build made a real difference in lives of many people in Nepal. One of the beneficiaries was Thagendra Chaudhary from Dang, a former bonded laborer who used to live with his family in a mud hut with thatched roof. The family’s poor housing situation led them to be marginalized from the community, and their hand-to-mouth existence made building a new home seem impossible. However, thanks to the hard work of volunteers during Youth Build, the family now has a new house made of bamboo with a galvanized iron sheet roof. Thagendra Chaudhary expressed his gratitude and delight, saying, “I am very pleased to have a new house. This is comparatively bigger and more comfortable. I heartily want to thank Habitat Nepal for serving needy families like mine.” 

Sharmila Chapagain, another beneficiary, exclaimed, “The future is bright,” after seeing the new house that was built for her and her two children during Youth Build by Global Village volunteers from St. John's School, in Vancouver, Canada. She had never had her own home before, but now has a safe and comfortable place to raise her family. 

From left to right: Volunteers work to build Thagendra Chaudhary’s new home, Sharmila Chapagain’s house under construction, the Global Village team from St. John’s School, Canada


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