HABITAT for Humanity Lesotho (HHL) has come to the aid of a needy family in Ha-Mokuba village, Berea by building them a two-roomed house with the support of volunteers from the United States.
Eighty one-year old ‘Matimello Lecheko, her 59-year old mentally-challenged son and two grandchildren were living in a dilapidated mud house and small rondavel before the construction of their new dwelling began last Sunday.
An elated Ms Lecheko told members of the media on Friday the gesture was timely because the mud house partially collapsed during the Easter holiday injuring her and her grandchild.
“The house collapsed on us while we were asleep. Luckily, we were partly shielded by a wardrobe, although some of the stones hit me on the head while my grandchild was injured on the knee,” she said.
“We then had to use sticks to support the wall so it wouldn’t fall on us again. Since then, we lived in fear that the house would collapse.”
Ms Lecheko said the parents of her two grandkids died before building a dwelling for their children.
“Before my son died, in 2005, he bought bricks so he could build a house on his land. Unfortunately, he passed away and the bricks have been here lying here since because I did not have the money to build a house,” she said.
“When the HHL people came to our village to build toilets for orphans, I asked them to build a home for my grandchildren since their parents left the bricks. Thankfully, my plea was heard hence the construction of this house which is almost complete.”
Ms Lecheko said the new house was a load taken off her shoulders because she used to ponder about her grandchildren’s future without decent accommodation.
“Since I am not getting any younger, I always wondered what my grandchildren would do when I pass on. I am a happy soul now that these children have a decent home,” she said.
“When I die, I will be happy because I would be living these children in a safe dwelling and they will have a place they can proudly call home.”
HHL National Director Mathabo Makuta said they managed to build the house with the help of volunteers from the US.
“We are handing over this house which was constructed through the help of people from America, who came to lend a hand to the less privileged,” she said.
“I hope the Lecheko family are happy and will forget all their troubles as they move into this new home.”
In his remarks, Tšoana Makhulo constituency Member of Parliament, Tšoeu Molise, lauded the gesture, saying building a house was not easy even for people who can seemingly afford it.
“To build a house is not child’s play. Even well-resourced people struggle to build houses for their families,” he said.
“So, when I heard that HHL was building a house, I made sure I would be present to rejoice with the beneficiaries. I hope you will come back again next time to assist more people.”
For her part, representative of the American volunteers, Andrea Bishop, curtly said: “We are happy that we brought change to the Lecheko family. I hope you will enjoy living in this new house. Stay happy in this house because building this house today brought us so much joy.”
HHL is an ecumenical Christian organisation that provides affordable housing solutions to needy communities. To date, 1 401 families have directly benefited from HHL’s efforts of building houses around the country. The houses they build are estimated to cost about M60 000 each.