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 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 DR 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 DR 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.)
Share your story and keep Habitat building
You’re building something exciting with Habitat, so tell people about it! Create a page on Share.Habitat to tell friends, family and coworkers about your Global Village trip. Fundraising your program cost will be easy, and additional funds you raise will keep Habitat building after your team returns home.
Have questions? Ready to join the team? George Leidigh will lead this team in the field and would love to speak with you.
George’s memorable GV experience:
“One of my first Habitat Global Village building projects was in Botswana where we were building a house with a grandmother who was raising seven grandchildren on her own. The two-room structure was simple and gave them a decent place to live. Working side by side with the homeowners is such an amazing experience where we put our words into action. The looks on their faces tells it all.”
For more information about this trip, please contact George at firstname.lastname@example.org.