Thailand, or Prathet Thai to locals, is located in Southeastern Asia, bordering the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand, southeast of Myanmar (Burma). Laos and Cambodia also border Thailand to the north and east.
The climate in Thailand is tropical, with a rainy, warm, cloudy southwest monsoon season from mid-May to September and a dry, cool northeast monsoon season from November to mid-March. The southern isthmus is always hot and humid.
Thailand’s population is relatively homogeneous. More than 85 percent speak a dialect of Thai and share a common culture. Theravada Buddhism is the religion of about 95 percent of the country’s people. The government permits religious diversity, and other major religions are represented. Spirit worship and animism are widely practiced.
About HFH Thailand
The government’s National Housing Authority estimates some 8.2 million people live in sub-standard housing. Problems are particularly acute in Bangkok as the capital has grown into a major metropolis of about 10 million people, dwarfing other cities in the country. Migration from rural areas has placed a strain upon on the supply of affordable land. Migrants face high rents for small rooms and often live in overcrowded areas plagued by a lack of proper sanitation facilities.
Habitat for Humanity Thailand began operations in 1998 in Udon Thani. Since July 2006, HFH Thailand has been operating through Habitat Resource Centers in Bangkok in the central area, Chiang Mai in the north, Udon Thani in the northeast and Phang Nga province in the south.
Through 2008, Thailand’s tsunami-reconstruction program had served more than 1,500 families and is being transformed, as planned, into a regular program. The move reflects the continuing strong need for affordable housing in the south of the country. Habitat builds in Thailand using several different models – including the Save & Build program and the “Building in Stages” model.
For more information, visit www.habitatthailand.org. An English language version is available.
Types of construction for volunteers
HFH Thailand’s houses are typically 36 sq. m. each in size and the design features the use of concrete interlocking blocks or concrete hollow blocks with a tiled roof. Habitat also builds wooden stilt houses with metal sheet roofs in southern Thailand. These houses replace makeshift structures composed of canvas, cardboard, leaves and wire mesh walls and patched together with rusted scrap metal and wooden planks.
On site, volunteers can expect to move dirt, move blocks, dig septic tanks, bend rebar, mix concrete, pour concrete and lay block under the supervision of a local foreman. No previous construction skill or experience is required.
Day 1 (Saturday, August 9, 2014): Depart the U.S.
Day 2 (Sunday, August 10, 2014): Arrive in Bangko); dinner and overnight in arrival city.
Day 3 (Monday, August 11, 2014): Travel to host program; welcome and orientation with local staff; visit project sites and families; welcome dinner.
Days 4-8 (Tuesday, August 12-Saturday, August 16, 2014): Typical work days: breakfast served before traveling to worksite; work from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.; free time after work to clean up; dinner; free time for activities.
Day 9 (Sunday, August 17, 2014): Free day; local activities.
Days 10-13 (Monday, August 18-Thursday, August 21, 2014): Typical work days: breakfast served before traveling to worksite; work from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.; free time after work to clean up; dinner; free time for activities. Dedication and farewell ceremony with community on day 13.
Day 14 (Friday August 22, 2014): Depart for home.
NOTE: Special events throughout the week include cultural experiences such as market tours, or visits to museums, orphanages, sporting events, schools and historical sites.
The team can expect lodging in a local hotel or guesthouse with participants sharing double-occupancy rooms and shared baths. The trip cost also includes three meals per day, including traditional Thai lunches on the build site, as well as snacks and bottled water.
(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.
Have questions? Ready to join the team? Barry Rauchle and Amy Miyawaki will lead this team in the field and would love to speak with you. Barry and Amy can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Amy’s favorite GV memory:
“I love the Global Village program. Each build brings in a group of people that for the most part don’t know each other. We come together as a team, we learn about each other, we learn about ourselves. Together we help a family often brick by brick, or bucket by bucket to build a home. Somehow words don’t matter, our actions and intentions say it all. It is a life changing experience that I love to share.”
Barry’s favorite GV memory:
“I have had the pleasure to lead or join 20 GV builds since 2002. Construction materials and methods vary for every build – cement blocks, bamboo, modular wall sections, wood frame, adobe clay, interlocking blocks and more. All builds are unique, interesting, rewarding and as must be expected – with challenges. Whether the team completes the home or just manages to get the outside walls built, the gratitude and emotion displayed at the dedication by GV team members and the family that will move in is always overwhelming. I’ll never forget one dedication when Dr. Ram Baran Yadav, President of Nepal, personally delivered a speech thanking HFH and all team members for improving the living conditions for his people.”