- Habitat started in Trinidad and Tobago in 1997.
- Individuals served in FY2021 – 1,080
- Through new construction – 35
- Through repairs -- 80
- Through professional services -- 965
- Volunteers hosted in FY2020 – 457
Capital city -- Port of Spain
Population – 1.37 million
Life expectancy – 72.9 years
Unemployment rate – 6.1%
Below poverty line – 20.2%
The housing need in Trinidad and Tobago
In 2019, Trinidad and Tobago’s Ministry of Housing & Urban Development estimated that some 200,000 people— about 19% of the population — lived in informal settlements. More than 110,000 people were on the waiting list for government-subsidized housing with some expecting to wait for up to 25 years. The main housing demand was driven by socioeconomic inequity and population growth.
Habitat Trinidad & Tobago partners with entities across the political, corporate, and civil society spectrum to advance sustainable development, particularly Goal 11 of sustainable cities and communities. We are recognized by the national government as one of two civil society organizations for housing.
How Habitat addresses the need
National Shelter Programme
The average Habitat house in Trinidad and Tobago measures 567 square feet. The monthly mortgage payment over a 30-year period is about US$100 which is significantly more affordable than the average rent in the local real estate market. Habitat’s two- and three-bedroom houses are built using culturally preferred materials — concrete blocks, galvanized roofs, concrete board on pre-engineered steel frames, and, occasionally, treated wood. We offer microfinance opportunities to prospective homeowners, including loans for materials, repairs, renovations, and/or to finish their homes. We also revitalize neighborhoods through the Participatory Approach for Safe Shelter Awareness. We provide training, develop community projects, and build the capacity of families through various workshops on disaster risk reduction, financial and credit management, healthy housing habits, and construction technology.
Habitat Trinidad and Tobago raise funds to provide housing solutions for the most vulnerable and marginalized communities in the country, as well as for post-disaster recovery projects in the English-speaking Caribbean region. We receive donations of money, materials, professional services, and in-kind gifts that support our shelter and training programs. With our no-interest policy, Habitat is often the only option available to low-income families outside of specially targeted government subsidy programs.
Regional disaster recovery and resilience
With the support of Habitat’s Latin America and Caribbean area office in Costa Rica, we offer a holistic suite of services to respond to shelter needs in the English-speaking Caribbean region. Our Caribbean Services Catalogue includes assessment tools and services of architects and engineers, recruitment and training of skilled builders, land tenure specialists, carpentry and masonry training, the Healthy Housing Habits program, the Participatory Approach for Safe Shelter Awareness program, procurement of construction materials, land tenure regularization services, capacity building, and geographic information system enumeration and mapping.
What you can do
Habitat affiliates in the U.S. can establish a tithe partnership to help build houses. Write TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO on checks sent to: Habitat for Humanity International, Attn: Affiliate Tithe, 322 West Lamar St., Americus, GA 31709
Habitat for Humanity Trinidad & Tobago. Chootoo Road and El Soccorro Extension South, El Socorro 280636, Trinidad & Tobago • T: +868 675-1222 / 225-8375 / 225-8403