Portland Cement partners Habitat for Humanity to construct houses for Cyclone Freddy survivors


Portland Cement Limited and Habitat for Humanity Malawi (HFHM) have ventured into partnership where they are set to construct 13 resilient houses for 13 families which were most hit by cyclone Freddy aftermath in Traditional Authority Njema in Mulanje district.

This was disclosed on Thursday 13th July, 2023 when the cement manufacturing company handed over 760 bags of Duracrete cement to HFHM for the commencement of the construction of decent houses.

According to Portland Cement Malawi Ltd Chief Executive Officer Jianguo Liu, these 760 bags of Duracrete cement are worth MK10 million which will be used to construct 13 houses to 13 households which were displaced by the natural disaster in T/A Njema area.

Liu told journalists that the magnitude of the disaster which claimed 105 lives in Mulanje district alone, compelled the company to think of complementing government’s efforts to build back for the affected families, hence the partnership with HFHM.

“Once Cyclone Freddy hit this area and southern region at large, we came here to appreciate the situation and we also distributed some food items to the affected people and that was when we thought of doing something to help their recovery process.

“That time I saw more people including children residing in class rooms because they lost their houses, belongings and even their loved ones. Their situation convinced me to come and build them some houses, hence partnering Habitat for Humanity and this cement donation,” explained Liu.

Habitat for Humanity National Director, Anock Kapira, commended the cement manufacturer for a positive nod to their request to support the initiative to construct disaster resilient houses for the displaced households in T/A Njema area.

Kapira further articulated that their company launched the initiative following a request from Mulanje District Council officials.

“We are happy to receive this donation through the Habitat for Humanity and Portland Cement Malawi Ltd partnership. We were already working on plans to start a recovery initiative. A month ago we were supporting cyclone victims with food items and emergency kits and there was a plea from council officials for us to come back.

“So today we have received 760 bags of cement from Portland Cement which will be used to construct 13 houses and we have started the project in the area of T/A Njema because it was one of the most hit areas in the district,” said Kapira.

One of the beneficiaries, Group Village Headman Ndala whose five houses and all his belongings got completely washed away by the running waters, never missed words to thank Habitat for Humanity Malawi and Portland Cement Malawi Ltd for the gesture.

Group Village Headman Ndala who nearly shed tears when narrating the experience, said more people from his area are still in dire need of support including food and shelter.

“It was a very sad moment for us here, we lost our loved ones and other belongings. For my sake, all my five houses were completely washed away but the coming of Habitat for Humanity gives us some energy.

“However, we would like to ask other well wishers to emulate the example because we are still struggling to recover on our own, they should bail us out. Most importantly, people here need food and shelter,” said GVH Ndala.

Habitat for Humanity Malawi works in disaster-affected communities to help people prepare, respond and adapt to disaster while empowering local communities on how they can build back better and safer homes.

In the program, the organisation help build disaster-resilient houses with affected families and equip the local masons with knowledge and skills on they can build houses to withstand disasters.