Habitat Trinidad-and-Tobago is pleased to be a part of the Homes Communities, Hope + You (HCH+Y) Global Campaign. We are using this opportunity of shared resources and messaging to leverage global support and awareness to:
• Encourage our national community to follow health and sanitation guidelines to remain safe at home during the pandemic;
• Promote disaster risk reduction and mitigation, with an emphasis on healthy housing habits and the 2020 Hurricane Season – targeting individuals and communities;
• Support the NO’s fundraising Call-to-Action, recognising the significant difference that small individual gifts can make to the safety and health of our most vulnerable homeowners;
• Advocate in the public domain (government and civil society, mainly) for partnerships, collaborations and changes to legislation/policies that treat with affordable housing.
We began in March and April by partnering with a local NGO to supply emergency food hampers and cleaning items to vulnerable homeowners. This collaboration provided much-needed relief to 279 people who were directly affected by the national #StayAtHome mandate, as many experienced job loss and had no other source of income. We also provided meals for the 117 children who lost access to free lunch through the School Feeding Program when the authorities closed all educational establishments.
• Not working and was happy for the help to be able to buy groceries to keep my family fed. The contribution made a big difference. ***Sherry R
• Thanks very much, groceries were short after paying bills, and Mom was praying for a miracle. *** Diane J
• I would like to publicly thank PLNL and Habitat for Humanity for all the assistance rendered to the less fortunate. You guys have been supporting tremendously throughout the years and continue to do so. We need more like you! Congrats on an excellent job. ***Nadia B, Community Leader
When the government lifted restrictions on movement in late May, Habitat Trinidad and Tobago distributed hygiene kits stocked with gloves, multipurpose sanitisers, wash clothes, masks and bleach to 240 families across 17 communities to the end of FY20. Unfortunately, we are experiencing another spike in cases of Coronavirus infections in this quarter, and we are officially numbered among countries experiencing community spread of the virus. Still, the National Office is ready to respond to the needs of our homeowners and other families, with another 200 hygiene packages prepared for delivery before the end of August.
We were fortunate, during the relaxed restrictions in June and July, to leverage a partnership with Republic Bank to field test our Single Storey House Building Manual with the 1st Engineering Batallion of the Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force. The 18 soldiers trained with particular emphasis on humanitarian assistance under pandemic conditions and will support Habitat in shelter and recovery response to communities affected by weather hazards. We are working with other like-minded NGOs on Shelter and Settlements policies and actions to help the Office of Disaster Preparedness to treat with citizens and displaced persons during the 2020 Hurricane season. Our current homeowners, and the national community, are assured of a qualified, experienced and compassionate response to their needs in this uncertain time.
Our digital media channels ramp up this month with more on Covid19 protection and disaster preparation, to mitigate against the loss of in-person training and volunteer building activities. However, Habitat Trinidad and Tobago will move to online engagement in the next few weeks, and we expect an excellent response to this initiative from the national community. We strengthened our skilled volunteer cadre by the addition of specialists in the fields of disaster management, damage assessments, logistics and other critical areas. We are grateful for the hundreds who engaged in our Virtual 5K Membership Drive, and we continue to urge all of you to advocate within your networks for policy changes to improve affordable housing access in Trinidad and Tobago.
Now more than ever, we need you!
About Habitat for Humanity:
We help people in our country transform their lives and their communities by supporting access to affordable shelter. Habitat homeowners build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage, and since 1997 hundreds of families in need of a “hand up” have worked with us to build or improve a place they can call home. Thousands more have benefited from shelter initiatives and training in money management, life skills, construction techniques and disaster risk reduction. Through financial support, volunteering or adding a voice to support affordable housing, everyone can help families achieve the strength, stability and self-reliance they need to build better lives for themselves. Donate! Volunteer! Share! Speak Out! Through shelter, we empower! To learn more, visit habitat-tt.org.
For more information, please contact Tracy Hutchinson Wallace, Corporate Communications (WhatsApp +18687024663).