Housing poverty in Nicaragua

  • 15,005 people served in FY18 15,005 people served in FY18
  • 685 volunteers hosted in FY18 685 volunteers hosted in FY18
  • Projects: microcredit, renovation, training Projects: microcredit, renovation, training

We've been addressing housing poverty in Nicaragua and advocating for the right to a decent home and for community improvements since 1984.

Since the establishment of our local office, we've supported 8,773 home builds, progressive improvements and repairs. In the past 5 years, we've led 6,000 training events and mobilised over 2,000 volunteers.

A dire need for new homes and repairs

Nicaragua has one of the highest housing deficits in Central America. The deficit is both qualitative and quantitative; in addition to needing 20,000 new houses per year, the country needs infrastructure improvements on more than 50% of its existing houses.

The total deficit generates a need for 957,000 new houses and home improvements, and only 50% of the total need is covered between the private and public sectors.

Addressing housing poverty

We’re committed to strengthening the social production and progressive improvement of housing. We do this through products and services that improve the quality of self-built houses through models that facilitate the building itself but also through training and technical assistance. On top of that we offer access to micro-loans for home improvement, and the involvement of national and international volunteers.

These efforts generate impact and raise awareness of adequate housing’s vital role in providing a path out of poverty.

Key facts & figures

  • Capital: Managua
  • Proclaimed independence: Sept. 15, 1821
  • Population – circa 5 million
  • Urbanisation – 86.9%
  • Life expectancy – 82.54 years
  • Unemployment – 12.4%

Construction services for the most vulnerable

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We work with local partners to build new houses and, at the community level, provide progressive improvements such as seed houses and water and sanitation solutions. Likewise, we contribute to reducing the housing deficit through home improvements, repairs and expansions, using second-tier credits that include construction technical assistance as part of the financing solutions.

Financial services and housing support services

We have placed a credit fund in microfinance institutions to help them grant microcredit for home improvements, offering preferential rates and construction technical assistance as a feature.

We believe that housing solutions should be accompanied by educational processes to train families on how to continue their home improvements. Currently, our local team provides services in financial literacy, safe housing, housing law and land tenure, and healthy housing.

Volunteering in Nicaragua

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Our team currently mobilises international volunteers from three programmes — the United States, Canada and the Netherlands — with an average of 500 volunteers per year.

At the local level, we also promote volunteerism in schools, universities and enterprises and offers opportunities in the areas of construction services, community development, communications and administration.