The majority of people in the village live in mud huts with grass roofs. During the rainy season (late Dec to Feb) the weight of the grass roof puts pressure on the walls. The roofs also leak which causes deterioration of the walls. The houses collapse. There are limited resources in the community to help families repair or rebuild their homes. Most people in Mwandi live on less than $1.00 per day and do not have the financial resources to address the issue.
A number of the families on the list include people with disabilities, grandparents caring for their orphaned grandchildren, or those who are abandoned or neglected by their extended families. All able bodied family members are expected to contribute their time to the construction of their house. As of the end of October 2016, there has been 160 houses built and they have lasted 15 years. There is a growing need for houses and the Kuta, (which is the local court/government), continue to request the assistance of Home for AIDS Orphans to provide housing for the needy people of the village.
The size of the house built for the family is determined by the size of the family requesting the home. There are three basic house sizes being constructed. At this time all the houses are traditional mud houses with metal sheet roofing. The project would like to be able to further develop to provide brick houses and prefab concrete houses. Brick and concrete houses are stronger and last longer (up to fifty years). The mud houses lastapproximately 10 years.
Although volunteer labour is involved building the houses the program staff supervise the construction and ensure each house is completed.