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Cluj, Romania

October 9, 2009 to October 23, 2009

We are building a team of diverse, open-minded members to help address the housing crisis that plagues nearly every country in the world. A trip such as this is an opportunity to build bonds of understanding between different countries through personal service, interaction and immersion in a different culture. Team members should be flexible and adventurous and should have a sense of humor, a positive attitude, a desire to help others less fortunate and a willingness to learn. No construction experience is required.


The Heredea family belongs to the 6.5 million Romanians living in poverty.
Romania’s country profile

About Romania

Romania is located in southeastern Europe and borders the Black Sea. It is situated among Bulgaria, Hungary, Moldova, Serbia and Ukraine. Romania has an estimated population of 22.3 million (2007 estimate).

Its landscape is broken by the Carpathian Mountains and Transylvanian Alps. The climate is cold and cloudy in winter, with frequent snow and fog, and summer is sunny, with frequent showers and thunderstorms.

Romanian is the main ethnic group (nearly 90 percent), but there are also sizable Hungarian (6.6 percent) and Roma (2.5 percent) populations. Romanian is the official language. The dominant religion is Eastern Orthodox (87 percent, including all sub-denominations). Minority religions include Protestant (7.5 percent) and Roman Catholic (4.7 percent).

About Habitat for Humanity Romania
Romania became the 50th Habitat for Humanity country after being invited to help in Beius. Six other communities, including Cluj-Napoca (Cluj), Pitesti, Radauti, Comanesti, Cumpana and Craiova have since taken up the challenge of ending poverty housing as part of Habitat. Now more than 1,200 families in Romania, who previously lived in miserable conditions, have a safe and healthy home.

The size of the typical HFH Romania house varies from 21 square meters (studio-apartments) to 90 square meters (larger homes for families with many children). Homes are primarily constructed using a wooden-frame structure and sandwich-type walls made of thermo-insulating materials. Use of durable, volunteer-friendly materials is a priority. The average monthly payment for an HFH Romania home is equivalent to approximately US$40 and is part of an interest-free, 20-year mortgage.

For more information about Habitat for Humanity Romania, visit

Types of construction for volunteers
Depending on the stage of construction, our team will work on a variety of tasks; new construction of single and duplex wood-frame houses and home renovations and repairs. No construction experience is required for GV participants.

Standard itinerary
(15-day itinerary)

Day 1, Friday
: Depart for Romania.
Day 2, Saturday
: Arrive in Budapest, Hungary; overnight in hotel; team dinner.
Day 3, Sunday
: Travel by mini bus to Cluj; welcome and orientation with Habitat host program staff member; dinner.
Days 4–9, Monday–Saturday
: Breakfast served before traveling to work site; work from 8 a.m.–4 p.m., with lunch on site; free time after work to clean up; dinner in local restaurants; time for team activities; walking tour of host city.
Day 10, Sunday
: Free time; cultural activities in local community.
Days 11–13, Monday–Wednesday
: Breakfast served before traveling to work site; work from 8 a.m.–4 p.m., with lunch on site; free time after work to clean up; dinner in local restaurants; time for team activities.
Day 14, Thursday
: Travel to Budapest, Hungary; free time; farewell dinner.
Day 15, Friday
: Depart for home.

Note: Trip includes special events throughout the week with host program staff, such as market tours, museum visits, etc.

Some team members may wish to spend more days in Budapest, which is optional.

Teams traveling to Cluj, Romania should expect to stay in a modest guesthouse with double- or triple-occupancy rooms and a shared bath. Meals are usually taken at local restaurants or prepared by the team. The team will stay at a hotel in Budapest, Hungary for the first and last nights, sharing double-occupancy rooms with a private bath.

Trip cost
Trip cost includes: donation to the Habitat host program and HFHI; meals; accommodations; transport (excluding trip participant air fare); medical emergency evacuation and trip cancellation insurance; some local cultural activities and team coordination and orientation materials. The team leader’s trip cost and estimated air fare may be included in the trip budget. The trip cost does not include trip participant air fare, R&R activities or visa and exit fees (not applicable for all destinations).

Team leader
Dan Wright is a seasoned world traveler and an experienced team leader. This will be Dan’s 11th build. He has led teams to Gdansk, Poland; Ulaan Baatar, Mongolia; Walsela, Alaska and twice to Kathmandu, Nepal. He has co-led trips to Nandi, Fiji; twice to Braga, Portugal; Ulan Ude, Siberia in the Russian Federation and Tana, Madagascar. He was also a member of a build in the Keni Peninsula of Alaska and traveled to Quito, Ecuador three times to work with a team in an orphanage.

Dan is a real estate investor and property manager and has lived in Mammoth Lakes, California, an international ski resort, for the past 20 years with his wife Carrol. He is a Vietnam Era, Air Force veteran and graduate of Westmont College with a degree in Psychology. Dan has been heavily involved in his community, elected to the Town Council to serve as Mayor Pro Tem for the last two years, President of the Chamber of Commerce, President of the Mammoth Lakes Rotary Club and President of the Mono County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue Team. He also serves on the board of directors of Mammoth Hospital and is a member of the Council of Elders in a local church. He is an avid golfer, skier, backpacker and snowmobile enthusiast.

For more information about this trip to Romania, contact Dan at or call him at 760-934-5678 (office), 760-914-2156 (cell), 760-934-7817 (fax) or 760-934-7825 (home.).

To apply for a GV trip, please follow the Application Instructions.

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