10,614 Houses were built from 1994 to date

Volunteer or Donate for the Tabitha Cambodia House Building Program


Tabitha asked for $A2000 in donations for each house to be built. This donation covers the cost of a house , a water source and the balance goes to supporting families on the Tabitha Savings amd Family Partnerships program. Some donors provide funds for a house. Many other supporters  help raise funds for a house and volunteer to help build the houses. 

Many House Building Volunteer Teams travel from Australia and other countries to Cambodia each year to build Houses for poor rural Cambodians. 

If you would like to join a team or even take your team please contact us at tabithaaustralia@gmail.com .

Volunteers now build over 1,000 houses each year with Tabitha Foundation Cambodia.

As well as being able to make a real difference in the lives of the Cambodian poor many volunteers often describe House Building with Tabitha as the experience of a lifetime for them. Also the impact of volunteer building teams on poor rural Cambodian families is life changing.



1.To provide an in depth and meaningful experience for foreigners visiting Cambodia. The team members will experience not only the tourist attractions but will come to understand and befriend Cambodians - both the poorest and the middle class.

2.To educate volunteers about poverty and the issues involved - it is an education in the causes of poverty, the results of poverty and solutions to poverty.

3.To become partners with Tabitha-Cambodia in our outreach - team members become volunteer sales people as well as fund raise for various projects.

4.To give Cambodians the opportunity to teach foreigners the skills of house building - rather than being taught by the foreigners - develops a deep sense of pride.

5.The families chosen represent the very poorest in their communities as well as being role models for their courage and faith in their own ability to
overcome seemingly insurmountable odds.


Many families participating in the “Tabitha Savings and family partnership Program” are able to save enough money to buy land and the materials to build a house. However, some very poor families cannot save all the money required for land and a house – for example, widows, single mothers, landmine victims, children orphaned as a result of AIDS, etc.

Community elders and Tabitha staff select the neediest families, who are to receive a house, from within the participant’s of the savings program in a community. Each family selected will contribute $25 USD towards the materials of their home – the team pays the rest. Families that are receiving a home must own the land where the house will be built.

Tabitha Cambodia invites international volunteer building teams to Cambodia to finance the materials for the houses and these teams then work, under the direction of Khmer builders, to complete the simple houses.


Quick Facts on How to Arrange a House Building Trip


What sort of groups form house-building teams?

. Schools and companies
. Rotary and other volunteer organizations
. Church groups
. Family Teams
. Individuals


 What is a typical Tabitha Cambodia house-building trip schedule?

Tabitha Cambodia has developed a very successful “formula” for house-building trips. Typically, this includes:
Day 1 Day 2* Day 3& 4 Day 5
. Half-day taken up at Tabitha Cambodia with an orientation briefing by Janne Ritskes.
. Half-day taken up by visits to Tuol Sleng Prison (S-21)
. Travel day to regional city/town (if building away from Phnom Penh ) . Building houses . Travel back to Phnom Penh. End of trip.

* if your team is staying in Phnom Penh, delete Days 2 and 5

Does the team need experience building?
Tabitha building teams do not actually "build" houses; they "complete" houses by nailing on the walls and floors. Prior to the team's arrival, a Cambodian builder under contract to Tabitha (the "Contractor"), actually builds the foundations, frame and roof.  Your team should include some members who are comfortable using a hammer  and at least some who are comfortable working from ladders.  The contractor (and the families) will guide and direct you.



How many people can be in a team and how many houses can my team build?

Teams build between 6 and 40 houses depending on:

. Size of the team
. The amount of fundraising the team can do
. The length of the trip

Teams members usually have been anticipating the trip for months, it is therefore important to ensure that the they feel as though they have worked hard each day. It is disappointing to the team to finish building too early in the day, so make sure that you build enough houses to keep the team busy.

Rough guide
Team Houses
10 5-15
15 7-30
20 10-35

What are the actual costs for houses?

 Tabitha Cambodia has requested volunteer house builders to donate a water source with each house donated. The cost of the package is $A2000. Specific house costs depend on the cost of materials and the remoteness of the village. Any excess funds are used in the Savings and family partnership program.

Housebuilding funds must be remitted to Cambodia six weeks prior to housebuilding date. Tabitha Cambodia needs to get government approval, buy and move materials and build the frames of the houses at least 6 weeks before a team arrives.  

Tabitha Cambodia decides  what kind of water source and where they will be built based on the needs of families.

What are the additional costs?

Budget for:
. Airfares to and from Cambodia
. Accommodation , meals and travel in Cambodia
. Travel and accommodation before and after the house building trip


 Contact  Tabitha Australia by email at tabithaaustralia@gmail.com to organise and confirm a building date and itinerary. 

Tabitha Cambodia has over 100 international building teams per year and so:
. Plan 6-12 months ahead
. Try to be flexible with dates.