Looking for travel, adventure and a chance to do some good? Come to southern Mozambique to work with the local community to build houses with the orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) program. No construction experience is necessary – just some flexibility, a sense of humor and willingness to have fun with your teammate and the local community.
Mozambique is a country of great potential and many contrasts. Located in southern Africa, it has borders with six other countries and more than 2,500 km of Indian Ocean coastline. Its population is strikingly young, with 10 million children accounting for half of the total population of 20 million.
More than 1.6 million people are infected with HIV/AIDS, In Mozambique, with 500 people becoming infected with HIV/AIDS every day, especially women and children. As a generation of parents die in Mozambique, they leave behind a social vacuum and more than 1.5 million orphans, 500,000 due to HIV/AIDS.
Since the end of the civil war in 1992, Mozambique’s economy has grown, however it remains among the world’s poorest 20 countries and ranks 175 out of 179 on the 2008 Human Development index. The income per capita is US$370 and more than 58 percent of children live below the poverty line. Seventy percent of people live in rural areas and subsist by farming small plots of land, while others migrate to South Africa to find work leaving families behind as they search for a better future.
About Habitat for Humanity Mozambique
Habitat has been active in Mozambique since 2000, building more than 2000 homes and housing more than 7500 people (most of them children). In 2004, the decision was taken to work only with orphans and vulnerable children as the AIDS epidemic was creating a dramatic problem by leaving thousands of children orphaned and living in unhealthy, unsafe housing.
Habitat works with the local community to build simple, decent homes and also provides a toilet, mosquito nets and certeza (a water purifying liquid which makes water safe to drink). Each house is also protected by a legally enforceable will ensuring that property grabbing does not take place and the children have the legal right to remain in the home even if their caregiver dies.
Habitat houses are made of cement blocks, have concrete floors and metal roofs. Without any major maintenance these homes will last for more than 20 years, keeping children and their families safe and healthy.
Habitat works in Gaza province, which has a population of 1.5 million people. Many people migrate to work in the mines of South Africa. The HIV rate is high and there are whole communities where the normal family composition is grandmother and grandchild. For this reason, Habitat has chosen to concentrate resources in this area.
Type of construction for volunteers
Volunteers will build simple cement block homes with members of the local community. The homes will be one, two or three rooms, depending on family size.
Day 1, typically Friday: Depart from the U.S.
Day 2, Saturday: Arrive in Maputo during the afternoon/evening; transfer to the hotel for dinner and overnight.
Day 3, Sunday: Breakfast at the hotel; late arrivals are greeted at airport by HFH Mozambique staff and transferred to the hotel; lunch and travel to project site; welcome and orientation with local staff; dinner with national office staff; overnight at hotel.
Days 4-7, Monday–Thursday (typical workdays): Breakfast served before traveling to work site from 8 a.m.–4 p.m. with lunch on-site; free time after work to clean up; dinner; time for team activities.
Day 8, Friday: Breakfast served before traveling to worksite; work in the morning if necessary; farewell celebration; dinner and overnight.
Day 9, Saturday: Breakfast at hotel before traveling to Maputo; check-in hotel in Maputo; free time in the afternoon; farewell dinner with HFH Mozambique staff; overnight.
Day 10, Sunday: Breakfast at hotel; depart for home.
Depending on the distance of the worksite from the arrival city, teams may travel directly to the worksite upon arrival. Teams will stay in modest hotels/guest houses throughout the entire trip. Rooms are shared and have electricity, showers and toilets. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are provided for all work days; one meal is provided for arrival and departure days.
(For more details about what is included in this cost, visit Global Village program cost.)
Build a better world: Take the Global Village Challenge
Habitat for Humanity International is challenging Global Village volunteers to make an even greater impact on the global issue of poverty housing. We are asking all GV teams to help us raise an additional $1.1 million in the coming year to support Habitat’s building projects worldwide. Take up the challenge! Join us in sharing our story and building a better world!
Lisa King works in marketing and research in Washington, DC and has been on Global Village trips to Mexico, El Salvador, India, Egypt, Ethiopia and Mozambique. For her first trip as team leader, she is returning to Gaza, Mozambique and can’t wait to see all the kids again. She hopes to recruit a fun-loving, adventurous team that is interested in connecting with the community.
If you’re interested or just want more information, please contact Lisa at firstname.lastname@example.org.