Help out and have fun with Habitat for Humanity

By Abi Thomas

The chance to give back to needy people, experience a new culture and holiday in an exotic location are just some of the benefits from working overseas with Habitat for Humanity, a Mangawhai man says.

Glen Kehoe is leading a contingent of Kiwis on a mission to Cambodia to build houses for local people in March, and there's room on the trip for people who want to join him.

Mr Kehoe, a builder, has been on several missions with Habitat for Humanity and said the feeling when the recipients see the finished product was "such a buzz."

"These are such humble people and they're so grateful," he said.

Habitat for Humanity is a not-for-profit organisation that works in partnership with needy communities to build sustainable housing.

On Mr Kehoe's trip, an international team will be in Battambang in north-eastern Cambodia for about a week, building six houses. He has been on several trips with the organisation before, to Nepal; Cambodia in 2011; and tsunami-ravaged Samoa in 2010.

He became interested in helping in developing countries when he travelled through Africa in his 20s and 30s.

Now in his 50s with two grown-up children, he jumped the opportunity to get involved with Habitat for Humanity, which he says offers great experiences and friendship.

"You're meeting a lot of like-minded people, and we have a huge amount of fun," Mr Kehoe said.

No building experience is necessary, as volunteers are trained in the local building techniques and all ages are welcome.

The cost of the Cambodia trip will be $4800, which includes a donation to help the Cambodian Government with the land purchase for the houses.

If you want to be involved, get in touch with Glen Kehoe by email on or phone (027) 459-2989, before Tuesday, January 29. The team leaves for Cambodia on March 30.

- Northern Advocate

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