In 2016 we helped Józefa’s family living in the village of Grajów, just outside Cracow. The project, titled ‘New house – new hope’, focused on finishing the house which the three-generation family had started building themselves a few years back, desperate to improve their living conditions.
Whom we helped – about the family:
Józefa’s three-generation family had for years been occupying a tiny, old house with a leaking roof, no central heating, no plumbing or running water. Their conditions were so difficult that they were noticed by the head of the village. She organized some local support, which allowed the family to start the built of a new house. The project sadly got interrupted by a sudden death of Józefa’s husband. After his death, the family could no longer afford to continue the built, so they contacted Habitat for Humanity Poland asking for help.
How we helped:
We helped Józefa’s family complete the construction works and lower their costs by:
1. Finding sponsors who provided both building materials and financial help. The main sponsor in this project was Somfy Foundation, whose help allowed to cover some costs of the specialized works. We also received building materials from Pakobud and Ekodom, while ‘Fabryka Marzen’ Foundation donated bathroom fittings.
2. Providing technical support and coordinating specialized works done by professionals. We engaged specialists who installed floors, wall insulation, plumbing, heating and electrics.
3. Engaging groups of volunteers for works which did not require professional skills, such as wall painting or floor panel installation. We organized 3 volunteer events and engaged 137 volunteers from 25 countries. The volunteers spent a total of 4744 hours on the building site.
In May 2016, we engaged 17 Global Village volunteers from the USA. In July, another Global Village volunteer group arrived from China. Then, a week before the World Youth Day, 73 more volunteers arrived to help. That group included young people from 22 different countries who were on their way to the World Youth Day event.
Another way we helped the family was by providing them with a small, no-interest loan for covering those costs which could not be reduced to zero through donations or volunteering work. The loan payments were adjusted to the family’s financial situation.
In autumn 2016, the last construction works were performed by building professionals. Once they finished and all the necessary permits were obtained, the family moved to the new house, where they can now enjoy decent living conditions such as running water.
Details of the project:
May 2016 – December 2016
Grajów (near Cracow)