The Importance of NGOs in Housing Development

Without a doubt, non-government organizations or NGOs are crucial in terms of achieving the development goals of a country. After all, while state actors reserve the responsibility of protecting the well-being of citizens, development remains to be a responsibility of everyone, and not just public officials.

Sure enough, this is something we can readily observe in countries in Africa and South America where local governments could barely provide the basic necessities for citizens. In this sense, non-government actors will have to step in and serve as force multipliers in the drive to promote a better quality of life for affected populations.

It’s for this reason and several others that make NGOs an instrumental asset in the development sector, especially when it primarily involves the construction of sustainable housing.

Here are the few others reasons that make NGOs highly efficient as development partners.

Education

architect desk office workplace - The Importance of NGOs in Housing Development

Since NGOs are basically made up of individuals coming from different backgrounds, there exists a health system for the sharing and adoption of new technologies and practices. Most NGOs have a research and development arm that allows them to conduct studies that aid in the design and implementation of their projects. Aside from that, NGOs can also help provide guidance along the lines of policy-formulation. They publish journals and hold seminars that aim to inform lawmakers of the most crucial issues to tackle along the lines of community development.

Resource sharing

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As much as we want to admit it, some governments are simply not up for the task of initiating development projects. This is mostly due to the lack of resources and funding. What’s more, procurement processes take too much time before a project gets started. Through NGOs, on the other hand, procurement processes are not as stringent and funds and other materials are readily available and can be rolled out at any time. This makes NGOs highly efficient in terms of resource-sharing since of their expenses come mostly from donations and cash grants from research institutions.

Manpower

building professional employee - The Importance of NGOs in Housing Development

Aside from funds and other resources, NGOs enjoy a great deal of manpower that’s available for any job at any time. From administrative staff down to a marketing team, NGOs have a well-rounded corporate culture that benefits from a highly effective talent pool. For sure, sustainable housing requires team members who are highly skilled in their respective specializations and who possess knowledge and competencies that allow for better productivity and efficiency.

Doctrines

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Doctrines serve as the basis for an NGO’s operational capabilities. In other words, doctrines refer to a set of ideals and principles that guide the members of the NGO towards making better decisions for the projects it is doing. In this respect, doctrines help organizations move forward and ensure that they are able to meet their targets. They operate within their own timetables, allowing them ample freedom to calibrate their goals every which way they want.

Sure enough, there are plenty more reasons why NGOs are highly efficient at what they do, especially when it comes to creating sustainable housing for vulnerable communities. It’s only a matter of understanding the specific needs of the local population and being able to make use of such information to drive development goals.

What Makes Sustainable Communities

Sustainability has been a concept that has become widespread in recent years. There are several reasons to this. First, industrial societies are growing at a rapid pace and they do so while affecting the health, culture, and livelihood of the people who are living in them.

Second, as the world population increases exponentially, it has become critical for governments to address scarcity, not only in terms of food and other resources, but also in terms of living space. And third, there is an ever increasing need to uplift the quality of life for many low-income families, especially those belonging to indigenous groups.

In the context of housing, sustainability involves the need for state and non-state actors to construct homes that are safe for the environment, respect indigenous rights, encourage inclusion, promote disaster resiliency, and realize the drive to accomplish the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals.

Let’s look at a few core tenets of sustainability that lie at the center of development work.

Disaster resiliency

earthquake rubble collapse disaster - What Makes Sustainable Communities

Every year, vulnerable countries within the Pacific Ring of Fire are highly susceptible to potential calamities, chief of which are earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions. People living in these areas should be aware of the importance of disaster resiliency. Communities that are able to design and execute disaster response plans are able to reduce casualties and damages to infrastructure.

Indigenous rights

little boy carrying can - What Makes Sustainable Communities

Far-flung villages are critically in danger. With threats of suburban expansion, deforestation, and climate change, indigenous populations are on the brink of losing their way of life. With this in mind, it’s important to create communities that respect indigenous culture and prevent ages-old traditions form fading along with the villages that practice them.

Inclusion

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Housing development should also aim towards creating better inclusion. In other words, populations should be able to take part in needs-based policy-formulation, which is at the very core of framing sustainability within the context of social empowerment. Inclusion also involves allowing marginalized members of society to take part in crucial conversations that have a long-term impact on their livelihood and, in general, their way of life.

Environment

cerrado deforestation goiás goiânia - What Makes Sustainable Communities

As industrialization continues to chip away at our and oceans, it has become vital that housing development consider the potential effects that residential projects have on the environment. Sure enough, sustainable communities use alternative energy sources, adopt a more rational waste management program, and encourage frugal, organic lifestyles to its citizens.

Millennium Development Goals

construction house building shell - What Makes Sustainable Communities

The United Nations plans to elevate the quality of life for the populations of its member-countries through initiatives that seek to uplift the social and cultural aspects of affected communities. Part and parcel of this drive is the reduction of poverty through livelihood development and other key projects that aim to give a better life, especially to the next generation. Sure enough, sustainable communities will have an important role in promoting this advocacy.

Kitchen Remodeling in the ASEAN Sector: A Genuine Experience

I have worked as an NGO partner ever since I graduated from college. I have never looked back ever since, because wherever the assignment takes me, I’m sure I get treated to something new. I am not talking about new landscapes and locations, but new experiences that offer something to value.

My first taste of development work was with the renovation team, which was tasked to handle remodeling projects for dilapidated homes in the Southeast Asia sector. Until then, I never had much travel experience, except for a few out of state excursions.

gray standard color book near green eraser - Kitchen Remodeling in the ASEAN Sector: A Genuine Experience

Still, I took it upon myself to face the challenge head on, thinking that this could be the opportunity I had been waiting for. The next thing I know was that I found myself on a plane bound for Thailand.

I was a scrawny young interior designer trying to make a name for himself, in a country thousands of miles from where I was born, and the initial thought I had was “What now?” My body was beaten by jetlag and I couldn’t even walk straight to the awaiting service van that would take us to the project site.

The village was only a few miles east of Chiang Mai. It’s a small collection of shanties that looked very quaint on account of the colorful decorations that were hung on the walls. When we arrived there, I was stricken by the simplicity of the place. It looked unassuming, but maybe because it was a Sunday and not a lot of people were active.

Nonetheless, I got to see a few houses that Loveland Habitat for Humanity was building, but I didn’t come there for that. I had a job to do and that involves giving the Anusorn household a new kitchen.

white wooden kitchen islan - Kitchen Remodeling in the ASEAN Sector: A Genuine Experience

The team acted immediately, assessing the kitchen like excited schoolboys. I spent time trying to get a good feel of the place and toyed with a few design possibilities that take into account the needs of the Anusorns. The patriarch, Mr. Gamon Anusorn, was very warm. He served us a kind of tea that was slightly acidic for my taste, but it was a refreshing beverage no doubt, what with the weather.

It was my first doing actual interior design work, and I have never worked with kitchens before! But what consoled me was the conversations I had with Mr. Gamon during breaks where he narrated humorous stories in broken English that, somehow, I was able to understand. These are the kinds of connections you build as you work with other people and discover different characters you came to remember fondly.

That is why I felt sad when the project had finished. Mr.  Gamon told me he’ll visit me in Oregon someday, so I’m counting on him to make that happen.

Importance of Kitchen Renovations on a New Home

Part of our work at Loveland Habitat for Humanity is to teach people the most important skills needed to become effective homeowners. On that note, we give important tips that should help them improve the functionality and feel of their homes.

Sure enough, people will often focus more on the most visible areas of the house like the living room and the exterior walls, but often, they overlook the need to renovate the kitchen. After all, it’s where delicious meals are made, so it’s only important that you make this area more comfortable to the people who use it.

Here are a few things you need to consider if you’re opting to learn how to do a kitchen renovation which we’ve taken from some of the resources on a local home, custom, additions, basements, bathrooms and kitchen renovation company Ottawa General Contractors.

Replace dilapidated wood

gray nails beside beige wooden planks and hammers - Importance of Kitchen Renovations on a New Home

Wooden cabinets and other wooden fixtures can wear down over time. Ion severe cases, termites can eat away at old wood, so it wouldn’t be a surprise that your cabinets become brittle, especially if it has been a year since they were made. Still, this is a quick fix you can easily do on your own. You can simply give your cabinets a fresh coat of varnish. For severe damages, you can simply replace your cabinets using new hardwood material.

Change your tiles

person holding pencil - Importance of Kitchen Renovations on a New Home

Nothing renders your kitchen brand new quite like new tiles. You can opt for laminated or vinyl tiles which are usually waterproof and are fairly easy to clean. Hardwood is also a great option, but it requires extra care and maintenance on your part. So, it’s better to stick to stone or fiberglass tiles can be cleaned thoroughly using a mop or even a dry rag.

Replace your appliances

comfort control cooking data - Importance of Kitchen Renovations on a New Home

If your refrigerator or microwave has been around for 10 years already, maybe it’s time to make a change for the better. Sure enough, old appliances consume more energy since they run on deteriorated parts that require more power.  Sure enough, buying new appliances can be a costly investment, but you will have to think in the long-term here. You only need to look at all the money you will be saving by using Energy Star-certified appliances and machines.

Keep these ideas in mind and you will have a kitchen that’s clean, efficient, and functional. That way, you can cook your meals the way you’re supposed to – with a smile