BatamGetaway was launched 2 years ago by Lokopoko Travel, as an online Batam portal providing Batam travellers high quality, efficient service and information to Batam. We are ever grateful for the support that we have received from our loyal fans and followers. With this post, we would like to further spread the love and encourage everyone to find it in their busy lives to give back to the locals in Batam. We believe that a small effort from you can go a long way for the villages and locals in Batam.

♥ BatamGetaway

Turn your typical Batam trip into A fulfilling Overseas Volunteering Experience

And so, it’s time to transform your Batam trip into an extraordinary, one of a kind overseas volunteering experience for you and your best travel buddies!

Beyond just having seafood lunch, a relaxing massage and enjoying your all-time favourite layer cake – kueh lapis, you have the opportunity to volunteer with Habitat for Humanity and turn your typical 2 Days Batam trip up by a notch.

With this extrardinary volunteering trip to Batam, rest assured that you will be having a memorable and priceless experience.

Embark on a Short Overseas Volunteering Trip from Singapore

Habitat for Humanity Singapore has a Batam Build volunteer program where you can make a world of difference to the Indonesian community in just one day! You can arrange your travel to Batam as a volunteer build trip or even combine a holiday with volunteering by simply extending your Batam trip by one or two days.


What is Batam Build?

Batam Build is a short-term house-building programme for those with the passion to serve the community yet, unable to commit to long term overseas volunteering programmes. Batam Build is as short as 1 – 2 days where volunteers can leave for Batam in the morning and return to Singapore on the same or following day.

What will I be doing for batam Build?

Volunteers will be building and constructing houses in Kabil Village, which is home to about 20,451 residents and is located in the sub-district of Nongsa, Batam. More than 40% of all villagers in Kabil live in inadequate housing. These homes are generally unsafe and prone to collapse and during the monsoon season, locals have trouble assessing basic necessities such as water, electricity and toilets.

As such, Habitat for Humanity has stepped up to make a difference to Kabil Village in Batam. However, it is only possible to make a greater impact with your help. Your contribution can help Habitat for Humanity achieve its target of improving the standard of living for families through the rebuilding of new homes, improving the current water, drainage and electricity systems.

How will Batam Build Help the Locals?

The story of Mr Bahtarim’s family…

Mr Bahtarim’s family initially lived in a house with leaking roofs, walls that cracked and a house which lacked proper sanitation and proper ventilation. Consequently, all of these led to sleepless nights and they lived in extreme discomfort.

Furthermore, Mr Bahtarim mentioned that his special needs son would cry constantly because he felt restricted within the small house. This problem got serious as his son would get out of the house and play on the road which was extremely dangerous. As such, Mr Bahtarim saw the urgent need to improve their living conditions and was determined to turn his house into a safe and modest one.

It was a huge turning point for Mr Bahtarim’s family when he worked alongside Habitat volunteers to help build his new Habitat House. Ever since then, Mr Bahtarim and his elder son were able to add additional touches and have personalised their new home.  Overall, the house was reconstructed into a safe and decent home.

Mr Bahtarim’s house before Batam Build
Volunteer Overseas in Indonesia Batam - Batam Build - After Building - Mr Bahtarim Home After Batam Build
Mr Bahtarim’s house after Batam Build
Mr Bahtarim’s self-improved house

Why Volunteer with Batam build?

Building a house, goes beyond providing a roof over the villagers’ heads. In actual fact, you are improving the community’s quality of life.

The presence of a clean and safe house improves the health and well-being of both the young and old in many households. Also, parents will be more motivated to get a job with a greater peace of mind, knowing that their children have a safe place to return to everyday. With a job, they can provide for their family and can better afford their children’s education.

All in all, it is evident that your decision to take part in the Batam Build project has far-reaching impacts that empower lives.

Volunteer Overseas in Indonesia Batam - Batam Build - Before Building-min
Local Village House Before Batam Build
Volunteer Overseas in Indonesia Batam - Batam Build - After Building-min
Local Village House after Batam Build

What you will experience

Through the Batam Build Trip…

Broaden your Horizons

You’ll become a global citizen with greater awareness of certain prevailing issues around the region. Also, you will engage in cross-cultural communications where you interact with the locals on a deeper and more personal level. Not only do you get to understand their way of life, but you also get to immerse yourself in their cultures, norms and traditions along the way.

Forge unforgettable friendships

Batam Build is truly a life-changing experience and a perfect opportunity for you to connect with your teammates and people from all walks of life. Everyone in the team has a common goal and vision of extending a helping hand to the underprivileged in the Batam community. So, expect to forge memorable friendships along the way!

Opportunity to give back to the community

Batam build is an avenue for volunteers to serve the community through a purposeful and meaningful experience. Homes built will give families strength, stability and promote self-reliance.

Volunteers hard at work
Volunteer Overseas in Indonesia Batam - Batam Build - After Building - Team Walking-min
Volunteers Walking and Bonding

Batam Build Tasks

You will be assigned to your respective teams and will join the current stage of house construction. It can range from laying foundations for the houses to making the finishing touches to the house. Some of the tasks you can anticipate doing are:

  • Laying the foundation
  • Tying Reinforcement bars
  • Hand-mixing cement
  • Brick Laying
  • Digging trenches for septic tanks and drains
Volunteer Overseas in Indonesia Batam - Batam Build - Mixing Cement-min
Mixing Cement
Volunteer Overseas in Indonesia Batam - Batam Build - After Building - Securing of reinforcement bars-min
Securing Reinforcement Bars
Volunteer Overseas in Indonesia Batam - Batam Build - After Building - Passing of cement-min
Passing Cement
Volunteer Overseas in Indonesia Batam - Batam Build - Laying Bricks-min
Laying Bricks

Who can participate?

Anyone above 15 years of age can feel free to embark on this journey with Habitat for Humanity. In fact, no experience of previous house-building is required. Rest assured as professional staff will be present on-site to guide you and to ensure safety throughout the construction process.

As quoted from Jackie Chan, ‘We have to do what we can to help wherever and whenever it is possible for us to help.’,  it is evident that we should try our utmost best to extend a helping hand to whoever needs it.

How to take part in Batam Build with Habitat for Humanity?

There are 2 ways you can contribute to the Kabil community:

One way for you to be part of Batam Build to find out more about Batam Build and sign up to volunteer by emailing [email protected].

Alternatively, even if you do not have the time to volunteer in Batam and yet you still have the passion and heart to help, fret not! You can also donate to contribute to the funds for the Batam Build programme.

So, what are you waiting for? It is time to reinforce your passion to help those in need by incorporating acts of service to your typical Batam trip. You’ll be surprised by how volunteering can spice up your trip and how it will make it your best experience in Batam yet! 

Some points to Consider before volunteering in Batam

Well, you might have some reservations such as…

Is it safe to volunteer in a foreign country?

Habitat for Humanity’s programme staff will hold a briefing prior to the Batam Build trip which covers administrative and safety-related issues. This ensures that you are aware about safety procedures and measures and you are free to voice out any concerns before you embark on the volunteering trip.

To further ensure safety, the Batam Build programme is vetted by Regional and International Offices. Also, professional site supervisors and safety officers are on site to supervise the entire building process, hence, ensuring that it is safe.

The work you are engaged in does not require technical training as you are involved in simple tasks such as:  laying the foundation, tying reinforcement bars, hand-mixing cement, brick laying, digging trenches for septic tanks or drains.

Batam Build also ensures that all builders have sufficient time for rest. Water and shelter are provided to volunteers and you can feel free to rest/take a break whenever, before you resume your build works.

“The highlight was simply having the house owners build the house together with us. Seeing how hard they work certainly spurred us on.’

Seet Kai Li – past volunteer

What if I have trouble communicating with the locals?

It doesn’t matter even if you do not have any knowledge about Bahasa Indonesia but if you do, that’s a bonus! Good for you!

There are staff in Batam who are fluent both in Bahasa Indonesia and English. You do not need to worry about any communication barriers because these helpful translators gotcha back!

Before you embark on the trip, Habitat for Humanity will send you a file with useful and commonly used phrases and words in Bahasa Indonesia. These phrases can come in handy when it comes to interacting with the locals as well! Of course, you need not resort to learn Bahasa Indonesia full fledge just for the trip!

Beyond that, non-verbal forms of communication have helped previous volunteers forge strong ties with the locals as well. Sometimes, the language barrier can be easily broken by having everyone dance and sing along with music.

Can I really impact the beneficiaries’ lives?

YES, you absolutely have the ability to do so!

Over the years, volunteers have poured in their sweat and tears to build over 900 houses in Batam, providing decent and safe homes for these families.

Now, these families live in safer homes and do not have to worry about environmental factors such as strong wind and rain. Their houses have better sanitation and overall, they live in a conducive and safer environment.

These families no longer have to worry about spending on repairs and construction for their houses and the money is instead channelled to other necessities.

Through volunteering, you CAN build homes which translate to strength, stability and self-reliance. Some villagers who were part of the Batam Build programme benefited a lot from it and they provided testaments about how they were impacted positively…

“This new home help me a lot in making sure that my children are all safe during the rainy season. Our old house will not make it through another year. Thank you very much for this help, my children can sleep really well now”

– Single mother of 3 daughters and 1 granddaughter

“I used to stare at my children’s faces once they are all asleep, because I can’t and shouldn’t fall asleep before them to make sure they have enough space to share … This is the biggest thing that has ever happened in our lives as a family.”

– Father to 4 children

Mr Bahtarim’s testimony on Batam Build

From the testaments above, it is evident that volunteers undoubtedly have the capability to impact the villagers’ lives.

How do I know I have truly helped the beneficiaries?

Before you embark on the build, you will be provided with information about the household you will be volunteering for, and upon completion of the house, a report will be sent to you. This report will contain updates on the house and family, with pictures of the completed home. The fact that you are able to see the tangible effects of your work will also leave behind a memorable and fulfilling experience for you.

Volunteer Overseas in Indonesia Batam - Batam Build - House After Building-min
    House after Batam Build
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