Core home initiative to be expanded in all regions-President -103 families benefit in Region Three

Georgetown, GINA, January 25, 2014

One hundred and three residents hailing from several housing areas in Region Three, were today presented the keys to their homes under the Government’s core home initiative, executed under the second Low Income Settlement programme (LIS 2), targeting single parents, differently abled and the elderly.

The homes were handed over in Westminster Phase one, Recht-Door-Zee, Phases one and two, and Onderneeming Phase one. President Donald Ramotar visited the areas this morning and committed that this year; the programme will be further expanded in Regions 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and the hinterland to further improve the lives of all Guyanese by ensuring they have the opportunity to own a home.

President Donald Ramotar during the cutting of the ribbon to launch one of the expanded core homes at La Parfaite Harmonie

Commencing in 2010, applications were invited from interested allottees who have not occupied their house lots, as well as those who have occupied theirs, but were living in buildings of low standards. One hundred and three met the eligibility criteria. Two hundred and twenty-eight core home shave been built thus far.

“I think it’s extremely important, it is one of the most important social facilities that we are doing because it gives people security in our own homes, helps the children with their studies, and the families because there is no land lord and no house rent, so that they can plan their lives better,” President Ramotar said during a visit to the home of one of the beneficiaries.

A family at their expanded core home

He pointed out that this programme has a lot of spinoff benefits for the country as a whole. While interacting with the beneficiaries, the Head of State spoke of the many benefits these, and other programmes have on individuals and the society, by catering for the economic expansion and allowing families to have disposable income.

“The core homes offer households an excellent opportunity to restructure their lifestyle,” he stated.

The President also highlighted the hinterland housing drive which has impacted the lives on hundreds of Amerindians, and noted that these initiatives are being used by the  Administration to  improve the quality of life of people.

President Donald Ramotar, Minister of Housing and Water, Irfaan Ali and one of the beneficiaries of the expanded core homes

Minister of Housing and Water, Irfaan Ali said that the initiative complements several other programmes and it has resulted in tremendous change in the housing sector, targeting vulnerable and low in group while at the same expanding opportunities for young professionals and other high-end professionals.

“Those are the opportunities that the Government has been making available for the people, developing the health sector and expanding education delivery, and now housing will be expanded in Regions 2, 3,4,5,6 and the hinterland in 2014,” Minister Ali reiterated.

Minister of Agriculture, Leslie Ramsammy handing over the keys to one of the core home beneficiaries in the presence of COO of Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) , Leslie-Ann Edwards , Central Housing and Planning Authority’s, Chief Executive Officer Myrna Pitt and Region Three Chairman, Julius Faerber.

The programme was also done as part of the Parfait Harmonie Housing development which has about 8000 house lots. Minister Ali stated that thus far, more than 32,000 people have benefited from the housing programme in that area.

From 2000 to now, more than $7B has been invested in the housing programme and the average investment per household amounts to $875,000.

Meanwhile upon handing over the keys to the beneficiaries later in the day, Agriculture Minister, Dr Leslie Ramsammy stated that the programme is just an example of Guyana working in partnership to better the lives of people.

He said that when the programme started there were some doubts, and explained that such a programme is available in most of the developing countries.

The 103 core homes, were completed at an average cost of $2.9M each, which gives an overall cost of $300M with individual beneficiaries contributing $100,000 for the construction of their homes. Approximately 423 persons will be housed in the 103 homes.

The core home project is aimed at addressing occupancy and issues of affordability, through the construction of 400 cores homes across the country.   The home is  is a modest 330 square foot timber and concrete structure with no internal partition walls, except for the enclosed sanitary block comprising a toilet, and shower. It is elevated three feet from ground level and lends itself to easy expansion as the occupant is able to afford. It is outfitted with a basic kitchen sink and electrical wiring and plumbing.

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