Local donor agencies have partnered with Habitat for Humanity (HFH) Fiji to promote construction techniques by Build Back Safer (BBS) in rural communities affected by Tropical Cyclone Winston in February.
Construction training will begin this week on Koro Island, one of the worst hit areas, as it battles a rising need for urgent housing solutions.
“Although many are starting to rebuild as they receive materials through the Help for Homes initiative, the lack of access to construction expertise on the island could result in the construction of vulnerable homes,” noted HFH national director, Masi Latianara.
They plan to coincide the BBS training with the arrival of more construction material by the Fijian Government’s Help for Homes program.
“This training will build the capacity of homeowners to use simple yet effective construction techniques that will help strengthen their homes.”
Representatives from 12 villages will undergo the three-day BBS training, which covers theory and hands-on instruction of basic construction techniques, including foundations, strong joints, strapping, bracing, roofing, and the selection of safe building sites to reduce the vulnerability of homes.
“The idea is to be able to train homeowners and community builders from each of the villages. These trainers will then pass the learnt skills to other members of the community,” Mr Latianara added.
He said they plan to multiply the effect of this training and increase the capacity of key people within each community to persist and advise the reconstruction of homes within their communities.
Training is also available to women and youth as representatives of members of the family that spend a lot of time at home, Mr Latinara stressed.