Habitat Blog

Global Village: Not Our Average Build Site

Alison is a volunteer for Habitat for Humanity Greater San Francisco, and the team leader for the 2013 Global Village trip to Vietnam.

Want to see the world while you change it?

If you’ve been to a Habitat for Humanity Greater San Francisco build site, opened a mailing or attended an event, you’re probably familiar with the tagline, “building homes and hope in Marin, San Francisco and the Peninsula.” Technically, that list isn’t exactly right.

Since 2010, Habitat for Humanity Greater San Francisco has partnered with Habitat for Humanity Vietnam, tithing more than $100,000 annually to help them build homes in developing communities. More than that, an annual Global Village trip sends Bay Area residents and Habitat Greater San Francisco supporters to Vietnam to physically help build homes while advocating for better housing and homeownership opportunities.

I had the opportunity to participate in a Global Village trip earlier this year, and now, I’m a team leader on Habitat Greater San Francisco’s third trip to Vietnam, next March. These trips aren’t just highly successful for our homebuilding partnership, but traveling and working with volunteers and the homeowners we are able to help is nothing short of remarkably moving.

Habitat Greater San Francisco volunteers working with locals in Vietnam, March 2012

Next spring we will be working in Thai Binh (meaning “Great Peace”) province, on the northern coast, a two to three hour drive from Hanoi. The Global Village trip isn’t a vacation. The village where we will build is rural, the accommodations there are very basic, and the work is hard—but we do it in order to give another deserving family the opportunity of homeownership.

We’re looking for more members of the Habitat for Humanity Greater San Francisco community to join us for this once-in-a-lifetime experience:

  • Dates: Friday, March 15, 2013 - Sunday, March 24, 2013, including travel dates, build dates and scheduled rest and activities. Due to visa restrictions, participants may opt to travel on their own after the trip, but not before.
  • Location: Thai Binh Province, Northern Vietnam (exact village to be determined, pending final confirmation from Habitat Vietnam)
  • Cost: Current estimate of total trip cost is $2,600, which includes Global Village trip fees, flights (SFO to Hanoi), accommodations, transportation, meals and some cultural activities, as well as donations to Habitat for Humanity International and Habitat Greater San Francisco. Visa costs are not included. $200 deposit payable upon acceptance, $1,250 (airfare estimate) due by mid-December, and balance due by February 1, 2013.
  • Fundraising: Participants are encouraged to fundraise to cover the cost of their trip. Habitat Greater San Francisco will provide an online fundraising tool.

Interested? Please fill out this questionnaire and submit it no later than October 7, 2012. Questions? Leave a comment (include your email in the field, it won’t be published) and we’ll be in touch.