Heartiest congratulations to the team of 15 volunteers from across the Northern Ireland travel trade who have travelled to Romania this week to build a home for young people for Habitat for Humanity, working beside a local community in Oradea, Romania.
The team has collectively raised more than £30,000 for the initiative, covering the cost of the trip and a donation to the work of Habitat for Humanity.
The volunteers will complete a home on a Habitat for Humanity project that works in partnership with a local orphanage to build homes for young people who are ready to live independently for the first time. Little or no support from their families, expensive rent and low wages, mean that it would otherwise be impossible for these young people to have a home of their own – a place that provides a firm foundation to create a brighter future.
Jonathan Adair, from Northern Ireland Travel News and team leader, said: “After months of fundraising and planning it is exciting to finally roll up our sleeves and work on site. As members of the travel trade, we often visit top tourist attractions in foreign countries and it is easy to forget that not far away many people struggle with basic human needs, including a safe, decent place to call home. During the next week we are helping to make a difference, in a very tangible way.
“We have received fantastic support from across the travel trade in Northern Ireland. Fundraising brought the trade together and we thank everyone for their generosity. The 15 volunteers travelling are representing everyone who supported us.”
The team will complete the home in just five days. Tasks on site will include raising walls, basic carpentry and plastering. No special skills are required as there are skilled professionals on site to provide all necessary training to the volunteers.
Dianne Whyte, Corporate Relations Manager, Habitat for Humanity Northern Ireland, said: “It is terrific to have the support from the travel trade across Northern Ireland. We thank everyone for their great commitment to this project through fundraising and, of course, their hard work on site this week.
“1.6 billion people in our world do not have a safe place to call home. In Romania, the team will see how a simple, decent home provides families with a ‘hand-up’ to pull themselves out of poverty and create a brighter future. The average cost of a Habitat home in the developing world is just £1,235. There are lots of ways to support us, including by donating so our work can continue every day in 70 countries around the world.”
The travel trade team consists of Jonathan and Isobel Adair, NI Travel News; Peter McMinn, Travel Solutions; Colin Laffin, Laffin Travel; Jill Russell, Topflight; Linda Henderson, Thomas Cook; Sharon Fleming, Thompson Travel International; Charlie Brown, Travelport; Tracie Duffy, Crumlin Travel; Paul McGuinness, Arrow Travel; Aaron Fletcher, Oasis Travel; Lynsey Lamont, NI Travel News; Elizabeth McVeigh, Century Travel; Trevor Ardies, Rosetta Travel; Joanne Hawthorne, Selective Travel Management; and Diane Whyte, Habitat for Humanity.
To donate to the travel team visit www.justgiving.com/nitraveltradebeiusbigbuild/
To learn more about Habitat for Humanity Northern Ireland, including corporate partnership opportunities, visit www.habitatni.co.uk or call 028 92 635 635.