Looking for the adventure of a lifetime? Join our team in the Dominican Republic this summer for an experience that is sure to be fantastic! We’ll work alongside a local family to build a home, hope and friendships. No prior construction skills are necessary. You just need to have an open mind, an open heart and the willingness to get dirty!
About Dominican Republic
The Dominican Republic occupies the eastern two-thirds of the island Hispaniola, which it shares with Haiti. Covering 18,792 square miles (48,670 square kilometers), it is about twice the size of New Hampshire.
The climate of the Dominican Republic is mostly tropical. The annual average temperature is 25 C (77 F). At higher elevations, the temperature averages 18 C (64.4 F) while near sea level the average temperature is 28 C (82.4 F). Low temperatures of 0 C (32 F) are possible in the mountains while high temperatures of 40 C (104 F) are possible in protected valleys. January and February are the coolest months of the year, while August is the hottest month.
About Habitat for Humanity Dominican Republic
Habitat for Humanity’s first 53 houses in the Dominican Republic were built in 1989, in los Cocos in the Barahona province.
Since then, Habitat for Humanity has built in nine regions of the Dominican Republic: Barahona, Paraíso, Polo, Jaquimeyes, Tamayo, Nagua, San Juan de la Maguana, San Francisco de Macorís and the city of Santo Domingo.
Concrete blocks, cement, iron rods, sand and gravel are used to build houses in the Dominican Republic. These materials are weather-resistant, since there are annual hurricane threats from July to November. These materials can be easily purchased in the country, although could not be affordable for the poorest families. You can learn more at Habitat's Dominican Republic country profile page or http://www.habitatdominicana.org/
Types of construction for volunteers
Depending on the size of the team, it could be divided into small groups and spread out at multiple construction sites. Volunteers complete improvements, finish work, repairs and expansions. International volunteers may work in all stages of construction, from digging the foundation to painting the houses. Regardless of what stage the house is in when the team arrives, responsibilities will likely include carrying bricks, mixing cement, compacting dirt and moving materials.
There will be designated resting zones with drinkable water and toilets with water and soap on work sites. The team will be supervised by technical advisors and construction experts who will provide construction goals every day.
Day 1 (Arrival day, typically Saturday): Greeted at the airport by Habitat Dominican Republic staff.
Day 2 (Sunday): Orientation with Habitat DR, city tour and welcome ceremony. Transfer to the project site.
Days 3-7 (Work days, Monday-Friday): Breakfast served before traveling to work site; work from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. with lunch on-site (in the rainy season or hot areas the work days will start earlier); free time after work to clean up; supper of typical Dominican Republic food; time for team activities.
Day 8 (Saturday): Transfer to Santo Domingo; free time.
Day 9 (Final day, Sunday): Departure day.
Note: Trip includes special events throughout the week, including cultural experiences with affiliate staff, such as traditional dances, market tours, boat rides, etc., as well as a walking tour of host city and farewell ceremony.
Habitat Dominican Republic will determine the best lodging option for your group, taking into consideration the group size as well as proximity to the construction site. Work teams usually stay in hotels, retreat centers or dorm-style accommodations that are basic, safe and clean.
The team will stay two people per room. Typically, rooms are equipped with a private bathroom, though in some locations, only shared bathrooms are available. Volunteers are not required to bring any bedding, but will need to pack a towel.
(For more details about what is included in this cost, visit Global Village program cost.)
Increase your impact: Take the GV Challenge
Habitat for Humanity is accelerating its work to end poverty housing, and we need Global Village teams to help. Set a goal and fundraise to make your impact last longer than the days you’re in the field. Your support builds more homes, creates resource centers, educates families, and advances our projects to build sustainable communities. We’ll even provide tools to make fundraising easy. Take the GV Challenge – join us in sharing our story and building a better world.
Kelli Akremi is a huge fan of Global Village because it combines her favorite things: traveling, meeting people, experiencing new cultures and volunteering. She is excited to be leading her second GV trip and has participated in HFH builds in Brazil, Guatemala, Jordan, Thailand and Haiti. A Montana native, Kelli now makes her home in northern Virginia where she teaches ESL at a public elementary school. In her free time, she can be found outdoors, hiking, playing tennis and chasing rabbits from her garden. On rainy days she’s usually absorbed in a good book while snacking on chocolate. For more information about this trip, please contact Kelli at firstname.lastname@example.org.