CLIFF Housing Program
Community Led Infrastructure Finance Facility (CLIFF) project was initiated from 2010 in four settlements of Kohalpur and Rajena VDC of Banke District in Mid-Western Region of Nepal. By promoting the right to safe housing, a total of 158 families were provided with secured houses of their own in the first phase of the project. House construction and renovations activities were conducted with the support of low interest loan offered by Basobas Women saving and credit Co-operative, an organization managed by low income women. For the construction of the house Lumanti has supported the amount of Rs 1,50,000 to each families through Basobas Women saving and credit Co-operative. The user committee managed and identified required loans for the construction of houses and submitted the loan application to the cooperative. The cooperative then issued the required housing loan to those in need. This system has been widely viewed as successful as the housing loans were made easily accessible to the low income people and has facilitate in building a positive relation between government and community.These achievements contributed in developing a second phase housing including a livelihood program.
Encouraged from the successful implementation of the projects in Kohalpur and Rajena, the project was extended in Pokhara, Lekhnath and Tansen Municipalities, including Kohalpur VDC with the target of providing 650 houses for low-income groups as the second phase. In case of Lekhnath and Tansen, a new approach for the implementation of Housing Program was adopted. With the objective to involve the private organizations in the social development works, a program was initiated with a tripartite agreement between local government, a private bank and Lumanti. The needy families in the targeted communities recommended by the municipality, after approval by the team of Project Management Committee, received loan through the partner financial institution.
In case of Pokhara, project approach and modality was slightly different. The project in Pokhara was targeted for the 279 low income rental families. As in Lekhnath and Tansen, a program was initiated with a tripartite agreement between local government, a private bank and Lumanti. The project was focused on areas where community savings schemes are already in place through Tole Lane Organizations (TLOs) and Lumanti seek to leverage further contributions and support from the government and other stakeholders.
The establishment of Project Management Committee (PMC) which includes Municipality, Banks, Lumanti, Civil Society, Tole Lane Organizations Coordinating Committee, Town Development Committee, Department of Urban Development and representative from Community, political parties, Journalist and Chambers of Commerce create a framework for partnerships to make unprecedented improvements in the living conditions of the low income families. PMC was the main decision making body who identified, prioritized and endorsed the target communities for CLIFF support.
The target families were involved in decision-making on housing design. A team of community architects has worked with the families helping them to analyze their housing situation and plan / design according to their needs. It is important that the families are comfortable with the final design and willing to pay the respective cost.
The maximum loan amount provided for house construction per borrower is NRs.4,00,000. The repayment period is 7 years with interest rate at 8% per annum including all service charges of the bank. The modality of contribution is 50 percent from the bank and 50 percent from Lumanti as bank guarantee. The repaid amount will be used as revolving fund which will be managed by Lumanti. The fund can be allocated to support other housing improvement projects in the same or other cities after recovery.
Each new house was constructed at low cost basis with more resistant to natural hazard in equal plot size. Thus, use of locally available materials is promoted, with emphasis on disaster risk reduction through appropriate settlement planning and house design. Technical supports in constructing the houses are provided by Lumanti.
With the same project modality in Tansen and Lekhnath, the project was also extended in Biratnagar Sub-metropolitan city providing housing support for 100 families.
Apart from the support for housing construction and renovation in the targeted communities, numerous training sessions in the various social, technical issues was organized in all program implementing cities. Orientation on proper finance management to cooperative members and involvement of community in Interaction program with political leaders to discuss the approach of CLIFF has been conducted for the smooth implementation of the program.
Interaction program on different aspects such as : Appropriate Housing Technologies for Urban Poor Communities, Housing for Low Income Group, The Urban Imperatives: Land use, transport and housing, Cost-Effective Housing, Appropriate materials and Construction Technology for Cost-effective Housing were conducted.
Media mobilization programs were conducted since the inception of the CLIFF program in Nepal that results the wide coverage of the program issues including the issues on shelter rights in local and national media.
Young Architect's Network (PTAG) Formed
The exposure visit to HPFPI in Iloilo and PACSII in manila City in Philippines provided the 5 team members learn various aspects (technical, financial, managerial, social mobilization, networking and quality control) of the CLIFF project and reinforce the process. Back from the visit, they started a loose network of Architect called PTAG, Pro Poor Technical Assistance Group to sensitize young architects on affordable housing for the poor and to get their support (technical) to implement housing project in the communities. The members of the PTAG is closing closely with Lumanti in various housing projects.
Affordable Rental Housing For Poor
Affordable housing for low income families is a major problem in Nepal. The problem of housing is more serious in the urban areas than in the rural areas due to ever increasing number of migrants from rural to urban center for various reasons. Due to ever increasing prices of land and housing in the land and housing market, housing is becoming more and more inaccessible and unaffordable particularly to the poor and low income families in most of the major cities in Nepal. The problem is further aggravated owing to lack of affordable rental housing with all basics facilities like adequate water, accessible hygienic toilets and other infrastructures, especially for low income families migrated to urban centers.
Realizing the urgent need of rental spaces with all basic facilities in affordable rent for those groups, Lumanti explored an innovative option and started the first ever Rental Housing Project in Nepal as a demonstration site, with the objective encourage low-income rental housing for contributing towards rental housing policy formulation in Dhobighat, Lalitpur.
The project has provided clean and safe rental spaces for 24 low-income families that include modern urban amenities. The model rental spaces has incorporated green design features like bio-climatic design, local construction material, rainwater harvesting, ground-water recharge and solar-powered LED lights in communal spaces. The four-storey building in Dhobighat, Lalitpur is built on 302 sq mt. of land, each of the 24 units have an area of 15 sq. mt. including a kitchen corner, toilet and balcony.
CLIFF Housing Program was supported by Homeless International-UK.
CLIFF Housing Program was supported by Homeless International-UK.