This week we are working alongside two families in the Tbeng Kert village, which has 375 households and 1,661 people. The houses are about 360 square feet and sit up on stilts, a typical Cambodian style which protects the family and their belongings during the rainy season flooding.
Today our work progressed significantly, but still, we wonder how we’ll finish by the end of the week. We continued to lay bricks for the staircases for the houses and the walls of the latrines. We poured the concrete footers that will hold up the house – remember all that rebar?
Meet the Family
Even in a village where everyone is poor, there are those who have least. The houses we are building are fully subsidized for selected families who qualify because they have no ability to repay and live in the most deplorable structures.
Getting to know Noeun and Sim has been a delight! They are always eager to help and Noeun liberally shares his infectious smile, although not in the photo above. Their children scamper about, no doubt, with wild anticipation of living in their new home.
They are the poorest by their village’s standards as they do not have a rice field, and cannot farm their own land to help support themselves. By harvesting cassava and Neoun traveling for work as a day laborer the family earns $87.50 a month. Most of their income goes to food and their children’s education. They currently live in a shack with woven walls and a thatch roof.
I wish all of you could be here with us to experience the joy we feel, seeing the new house progress day by day, knowing that these people will have a new and decent place to sleep, that is dry and free of insects and clean and strong.
They are why we build.