Maryknoll Affiliates

Building Global Community

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Housing Project in Haiti

The idea for the housing for women project came to us after the January 2010 earth quake in Haiti. The Jeremie area itself had accommodated thousands of earthquake refugees. The most vulnerable as always were women and their children.Studies have shown that women, who own their own homes in Haiti are more able to maintain their own small businesses, and feed, clothe and educate their children. So the idea to build simple houses for women was born. To locate women who are in need of housing we work with local women's groups who will decide which woman in their area is most in need. In order for a woman to qualify she has to have title to the land, and she has to be single. Of course this does not mean she has te remain single for the rest of her life, but once she has a house nobody can put her out, she has security. Also she has to put some sweat equity into the building of the house, and the whole community is involved in transporting building material. Each house provides paid employment for about 8 people. We have built 15 houses so far and have provided short term employment for about 120 people thus putting money  into the community. Each of the houses has 3 rooms, 2 bedrooms and a livingroom/dining room. A separate latrine also comes with the house.

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