Habitat for Humanity SA has spent many years in its projects fulfilling its mission to build homes, communities and hope. What starts as a shelter-related need which gets addressed by infrastructure development, ends up as so much more.
Habitat SA is approached by a community to come and assist with their shelter needs. A needs analysis or social scoping is done and a Community Action Plan (CAP) is produced which identifies the most pressing shelter-related issues to be addressed. Habitat invites Corporates to get their employees involved in the solution by sending them to build homes, transfer skills or offer financial support through payroll giving.
The Habitat Volunteer Build Event serves as a way of meeting the community’s need while giving corporate volunteer teams (made up of active citizens) a chance to experience a side of life in South Africa that many have never been exposed to before. It is a transformational, deeply healing experience that builds lasting bridges between people from different circumstances.
Miracles happen when men and women – South Africans of all races – work alongside each other to build something of value together. Everyone comes away with a changed mindset, a shift in preconceived perceptions and a heart full of empathy for one another.
The Community members are trained and skilled to assist in every aspect of the Build event from crew leaders, parking marshals, caterers, block leaders, public speakers, community guides, builders, etc. These skills translate into paid jobs for the locals who are then empowered to be active in their own development. We see the volunteer build programme as a vital catalyst for broader, long-term development of the families and communities we serve; uplifting families from shelter-poverty to stability and self-reliance.
Ephraim, an @6 community leader in Orange Farm, Gauteng, after many years of social facilitation input from HFHSA programmatic staff, took the initiative to act alone and write an email to a senior executive at Discovery Health. As a result, Discovery have adopted Orange Farm as a long-term project leading to many improvements to livelihoods in that community going forward.
Habitat for Humanity South Africa’s Build event
Habitat for Humanity SA facilitates a safe, structured and well executed event for your employees. For most volunteer participants, the experience has proved to be transformational, leaving a lasting impact. It fosters greater understanding of shelter, poverty and unemployment issues in the community and builds relationships across all cultural divides. Ordinary citizens feel empowered and hopeful when they become more active in the solutions.
The Build event is the first real entry point we have with corporate volunteers and a very powerful introduction to our work. Habitat for Humanity SA’s core business focuses on developing long term resilience of individuals and communities, especially as it pertains to the improvement of or access to housing. As such, Build Events are crucial catalysts for long-term, real transformation by building homeowners’ (and communities’) strength, stability and self-reliance through shelter. We are working to draw investments and build partnerships to support the broader development of the communities where we work.
The Build event is only part of the story. What evolves after the event is the long-term impact we all hope for. Please see the Shelter-Related Community Development infographic to show how money raised from these events goes towards Habitat for Humanity South Africa’s ongoing programmatic work in the communities we serve: