Volunteer on a building project in the Philippines and help with the ongoing enormous relief effort needed following Typhoon Yolanda in November 2013. The task of rebuilding homes and community buildings is immense and international NGOs are doing their best to help the government with rehabilitation and this project is playing a part in that process. The priority for this project is to focus on those most at-risk; the low income families who have lost their livelihoods and rural communities. Shelter is essential so that families have a secure place to stay while they try to rebuild over areas of their lives.
The project aim is to build sustainable accommodation that will house generations to come while taking into account the local flood conditions. The project has investigated the types of structures suitable for different areas from flood zone areas to those in an urban setting. Access to power tools is almost non existent as the electricity supply is still scarce in the region making this a slower process than is ideal. Conditions are challenging but those who are willing to get stuck in and share their skills, enthusiasm and commitment will find this project extremely rewarding and will play an active role in securing safe housing for Tacloban communities in most need.
Why choose this project?
The task facing the communities in Tacloban following Typhoon Yolanda is overwhelming and the assistance of external volunteers is much needed. Dealing with the trauma of the events that took place as well as securing a livelihood is very challenging for most families. Man power, hard work and willingness to get dirty are needed to help to protect the most vulnerable and to off local communities a better future through this building project in the Philippines.
Role of the volunteer
You will help to build houses or other standing structures as deemed a priority with the project building mandate. Depending on your skills, the materials being used and the stage of construction you may be asked to help dig foundations, lay hollow bricks, help set supporting pillars, build roof frames and help to improve the appearance of buildings to make them homely. You will work as part of a locally led team so good interpersonal skills are necessary.
No specific building skills are needed although those with carpentry and building skills are highly sought. Volunteers must be flexible, strong and willing to work hard and get dirty. If you can bring non power tools such as hammers, hacksaws and wire-cutters that will really help the relief effort. Bring a good pair of gloves and some sturdy boots. The conditions in Tacloban are challenging so volunteers must be resilient and able to get on with the job in hand. Volunteers will be required to have a telephone interview before being accepted onto the project. You will also be asked to send your CV/resume before being accepted onto this project.
WHY JOIN THE PROJECT
The project is located in Tacloban City in Leyte province in Visayans region of Philippines which was devastated on 8th November 2013 when Typhoon Haiyan (or Yolanda as it is known locally) hit and destroyed homes, livelihoods and community spaces as well as taking many lives. Widespread devastation now exists in the area but there is much to do and see beyond the disaster zone.
Tacloban is located on an the island of Leyte, about an hour by air southeast of Manila. Tacloban is a former World War II site, liberated in 1944 from Japan. It has a population of over 300,000 and the local language is Waray-Waray, but many people speak English.
Volunteer in Tacloban and join our local team and gain an insight into the realities of surviving and rebuilding lives and communities. You will surely be touched by the gentle nature and resilience of the Filipino people. Take an additional week or two after your placement and visit some of the beautiful mountains, beaches and countryside unaffected by this tragedy and put money back into the economy and continue to contribute with your efforts to help the communities of Tacloban.
- Duration: 2 – 26 weeks
- Cost: £810/$1418 for 2 weeks, £95/$166 for each week thereafter
- Requirements: age 18+
- Location: Tacloban, Leyte, Philippines
- Project activities: Construct houses or other key community buildings in line with assistance mandate
- Working hours: At least 4 hours per day, Monday – Friday. If you wish to work extra, please ask an advisor about other options available to maximise your time
- Project Availability: Please note that funding needs to be in place for the project to run, as well as avoiding the rainy season. Please speak to an advisor about availability
- Arrival day: Saturday
What is included
- Accommodation: Single or shared room in a homestay with mosquito net & clean drinking water
- Food: 2 meals per day – Breakfast and dinner
- Airport pickup and drop off from Tacloban Airport
- Training: Pre-departure pack, on-site orientation and project induction provided
- Support: 24 hour support from on-site coordinators
- Excursions: Staff may be able to help plan weekend excursions but they are stretched at the moment due to the demands of coping with the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan
What is not included
- Police/Government Background Check; US and UK citizens will be processed through Kaya (admin fee applies) all other nationalities must provide local police check