Construction Volunteer Program
International volunteers who are handy and love to get stuck into projects will love this project which aims to change the living situations of those less fortunate. Unfortunately, there are many families living in dire situations in Jamaica. Some are simply homeless, displaced by natural disaster, have experienced hardships through loss of property or job, are unwell, or have met hard times and are in need of support. Many are living in unsafe and unsanitary make-shift places that are a danger to their wellbeing. Housing is a fundamental human right under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and everyone should have a safe, secure, and habitable home. This important project works to put a safe roof over the heads of these deserving families. Volunteers on this program work with project staff and locals on every aspect of the building process, helping wherever it is needed. This program also works on providing safe and sanitary buildings to local schools or community groups who are severely under-funded.
Goals of this Project:
- Provide quality housing to impoverished families
- Provide safe, healthy homes to enable families to live happier, healthier lives
- Improve the prospects of some of Jamaica’s most impoverished people, and help them to break the poverty cycle
- Expose volunteers and locals to new cultures
How You Can Help
Volunteers on this essential construction program will be helping impoverished families into safe and sanitary homes. This program will see volunteers involved in building homes and carrying out repairs to schools, orphanages and other places that supply a service to the community. Volunteers will be expected to work hard on manual tasks alongside a local expert builder. Tasks could include any number of things, including helping to dig foundations, mixing cement, laying blocks, carrying sand and marl, fixing cupboards, desks and chairs and repairing bathrooms. Those with studies or experience in building, engineering, construction, architecture, renovations, painting, carpentry, plumbing or any related area are suitable, however anyone who is a hard worker and is willing to get stuck in and get their hands dirty should apply. This program will be a wonderful experience for volunteers who wish to help impoverished Jamaican families into homes where they can thrive.
Volunteers will contribute in many ways and can expect to undertake the following tasks:
- Help design work plans
- Help build the foundations for houses
- Build houses
- Move construction materials
- Help to build or repair furniture and fixtures
Love Volunteers welcomes all those 18 years and over who wish to have a tangible and lasting impact on the lives of families and communities facing extreme poverty in Jamaica. This 'hands-on' project is ideally suited to those volunteers with some knowledge and experience in construction or any of the building trades, however the project is open to all and does not require participants to have specific education, qualifications or experience, as you will be shown everything you need to know by your local project leader. Importantly though, all applicants must first and foremost have a genuine willingness to help, be fit and active, show drive and initiative, and bring a positive 'can-do' attitude. If this sounds like you, we want you on the team!
Additionally, volunteers applying to join this program will be required to supply to following documentation:
- Emergency contact
- Police check
As with all of our Jamaica volunteer programs, volunteers on this project will be based in the idyllic city of Mandeville. Situated in the heart of the island at 2000 feet above sea level, Mandeville is one of the more peaceful and attractive places on the entire island of Jamaica.
In days gone by, wealthy English settlers and expatriates favoured this part of the island, building impressive mansions and country homes here because the landscape reminded them of the countryside of their home countries. Today, a large number of the residents here are Jamaicans who have lived abroad for many years, usually in England, and who have returned to retire.
Thanks to this esteemed history, Mandeville is not only a booming business center and capital of the Manchester Parish, it is a contrast of the new and old set amidst rolling hills and lush vegetation. What a wonderful place to volunteer!
Start Dates & Duration
This project is available year-round and programs start every SUNDAY. Volunteers can choose to participate for periods ranging from 2 weeks to 12 weeks. Longer stays can be arranged directly with the local team, but will be subject to availability and individual visa conditions.
Spaces on this project are limited and therefore subject to availability. Early booking is recommended.
For current available start dates please check the calendar on the right.
Arrival & Orientation
Upon your arrival into Kingston or Montego Bay, you will be collected at the airport and delivered to your accommodation. Here you will receive an orientation to help you settle in, find out about your volunteering placement, the local surroundings and meet your fellow volunteers. A representative from the local team will fill you in on local and regional customs, traveling, rules and recommendations, and of course, what to expect from your volunteering experience. They will also provide you with your Welcome Pack, which contains maps of the local area, supplies, volunteer t-shirt, contact information, and a volunteer manual to help you to be more aware and fully prepared. This is a great opportunity to get to know your hosts, meet your fellow volunteers, and ask any last questions you may have.
- Program Arrival Day: SUNDAYS
- Program Departure Day: SATURDAYS
- Arrival/Departure Airport: Norman Manley International Airport, Kingston, Jamaica (Code: KIN) OR Sangster International Airport, Montego Bay, Jamaica (Code: MBJ)
Accommodation & Meals
Volunteers on this program will be accommodated with a local Jamaican host family, where they will have the opportunity to become fully immersed in the local culture and custom, improving their knowledge of the people, culture and language. Jamaican families are renowned for their hospitality and love to learn more about different cultures. Living with a local family truly is the best way to throw oneself into the local culture and to meet people who will often become lifelong friends!
All host families have been fully vetted by our local team, receive a detailed orientation and have extensive experience hosting international volunteers. Depending on the time of year it may be necessary to share a room with other volunteers, but private rooms are often available upon request. Volunteers will be provided access to a shared bathroom and laundry. Volunteers are responsible for doing their own laundry (machine wash or hand wash onsite) or can pay a small fee to cover the cost. Wifi is available at most host family houses, however we ask volunteers to remember access to this service is a privilege and may be limited at times. A range of internet cafes are available in Mandeville.
Host families will provide breakfast and dinner daily (including weekends). Lunch is not included but can be purchased at a nearby café while at your project site – a wonderful opportunity to check out the huge variety of local and international restaurants, cafés and bistros in Mandeville!
*In addition to the program fees listed above a Registration Fee is payable to secure your place. The registration fee is USD 299 for those volunteering with Love Volunteers for the first time or USD 149 for any subsequent volunteer placements. The registration fee includes: lifetime LV Alumni Membership, fundraising support & advice, dedicated pre-departure support, certificate of completion (on request), and exclusive access to the LV Trip Planner.
Some things are not included in the program fees listed above, such as flights, visas, vaccinations, travel insurance, additional foods and snacks, spending money, local transport, in-country trips and excursions, return airport transfer (unless mentioned above).
Please note that prices are subject to change without notice. Please ensure you have read the Love Volunteers Terms and Conditions & Refund Policy.