This past April, HFH Cambodia Construction Supervisors led a quarterly workshop with the focus on identifying low cost housing design options, the obstacles related to the construction process and maximizing volunteer effectiveness during construction. Staff from HFHC Projects and Volunteer Program teams participated in looking at alternative design options, cost estimates, and strategies for maximizing results. A particular emphasis of the workshop was low cost and affordable housing options for people living with or affected by HIV/AIDS, orphans and vulnerable children (PLWHA / OVC).
Focusing on these design options, as well as benefiting from feedback from our home partners has meant further modifications to some designs that have been implemented. Additionally, through responses from our skilled workers regarding some more traditional Khmer materials and techniques used in the actual construction, some designs were identified to be inappropriate to be built during the rainy season. Ongoing design modifications have led to stronger, more weather resilient, and better looking homes.
One design that some of our Global Village volunteer members will recognize is the 4m by 5m detached house. Outstanding design elements of this home include interior and exterior plastering for better weather protection, fewer wooden roof beams due to the addition of concrete perimeter beams, a short zinc “wave” porch roof, and a short concrete slab front porch. To date, this design has primarily been used on homes in our Chabpdeum Chivet Thmey (New Start New Life) and project and Building Homes Building Positive Lives project in Phnom Penh and Kandal.
The home design includes an attached latrine and water collection jars at the rear of the building, and the family also receives a water filter. Based on project location, and distance from materials suppliers this home can be built for approximately US $2400.