Kyaka II is a refugee settlement in west Uganda that gives refugees from war-torn Congo a section of land to try to rebuild a life. During our visit to the Kyaka II in 2019, we discovered that there were over 90,000 refugees seeking shelter in the camp due to violence in neighboring countries. Of these 90,000 refugees, there is a need for over 4,000 homes.
Today, there are over 15,000 refugees - 1 in 6 - without adequate housing in the Ugandan refugee camp, Kyaka II. These 15,000 refugees are considered People with Specific Needs (PSN) and are comprised of unaccompanied children, single-mothers, older persons at risk, and persons with disabilities. These PSN are who we hope to not only provide for but also empower them as they wait to return to their old life.
Sadly, women and children are the most affected by this lack of adequate housing. Over 85% of Kyaka II is comprised of women and children. This major disproportion makes security a major concern for most households. The Settlement Commander of Kyaka II emphatically stated that, “women are at a high risk without [adequate] shelters.” Providing these women and children with adequate housing is essential to their privacy, protection, and emotional well-being. To quote the Kyaka II Settlement Commander again: “The impact of the home to a mother is SO BIG.”
We at Carpenter Project believe that these refugees have the right to their own space and their physical protection.
Carpenter Project provides adequate living situations for third-world refugees. Its founder, Will Hansen, envisions economic growth and social change for these at-risk individuals. Through Enactus, Carpenter Project will market its humanitarian outreach to other countries and at-risk individuals. Will Hansen’s construction company, Hansen Bros. Construction, developed this model for his own houses, improving the lives of people from Central America to Uganda.
As the average house in the US is in the upper $200,000 a shelter that cost $3500 is less than 2% of the total price of the US home. Domestically, Carpenter Project partners with local construction companies, so we always have new people helping. Internationally, we not only employ refugees to make bricks and build the houses but we also use local materials, benefiting both the recipients of the houses, and also the settlement community.
If a brother or sister is naked and lacks daily food, and one of you says to them, 'Go in peace; keep warm and eat your fill,' and yet you do not supply their bodily needs, what is the good of that? So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.
250 square foot house
External outhouse provided
Locking doors & windows
Separate kitchen area for cleanliness
Supports local community buy funding workers and purchasing local materials
House the Most Vulnerable (PSN's) in the settlement first.
After expanding the Carpenter Project model we can proceed to help all of the PSN’s in Kyaka II which is about 17% of the settlement.
We can then expand to other settlements that have even greater need with a model that works smoothly and efficiently.
Domestically, Carpenter Project partners with local construction companies, so we always have new people helping. Internationally, we employ refugees to make bricks and build the houses, benefiting both the recipients of the houses, and also the settlement community.
The additional amount of money collected from each domestic home will be used to:
pay the local workers
buy the materials for the new refugee house
pay the operational costs