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House building support for a poor familiy

Clarksdale, USA

MAD – Make A Difference is a charitable organization which aims to raise awareness for social injustices and provides help in the affected regions.

Philipp A. from Make a Difference (MAD) e.V.
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MAD is a charitable association which was formed in 2005 by students of the EBS Universität für Wirtschaft und Recht. MAD aims to raise awareness among students and professionals for social problems and in the following provides active help in regions suffering from extreme poverty. The main activities of the initiative are based on 3 pillars: sensitize, help, and connect people.

We sensitize people for social injustices by confronting them with shocking realities and the urgent need to provide active help.

We provide active help in the respective regions and try to make a sustainable improvement for the regions. We believe that by cooperating with the local population we are able to support them without creating dependencies. Essentially, we give people a new home.

Connect People
We bring people with different backgrounds and distinct experiences together and trust in the fact that both sides are able to benefit from each other.

Meanwhile, the initiative has more than 100 members and is organizing the yearly Mississippi Trip for the 10th time this year. Each year a group of students travels to Clarksdale Mississippi, the poorest region in the United States, and participates in cooperation with Habitat for Humanity in house building for needy families. Habit for Humanity is an international non-profit organization which improves the housing situation in socially deprived regions and gives poor a people a place to reside.
MAD organizes the Mississippi Trip for a group of 15 to 20 students. Under the supervision of a construction supervisor, the group participates in the house building for a local family. During the house building, the students fulfil various tasks, dependent on the progress of the house building. While the last group laid the tiles on the floor, painted the walls and lacquered strips of wood, the group in the year before installed the base frame of the house. Other groups rebuilt the roof or installed doors and windows. Essentially, all tasks that belong to constructing a complete house are performed by the students. Besides the students and the construction supervisor, many people from the local population, in particular children, come to the construction side in order to support the group and participate in the house building.

Although the house building appears to be the corner stone of the Mississippi Trip, it is only one aspect of this fabulous experience. The probably more important part of the trip is the exchange with the local population. After the daily house building, the group spends as much time as possible with the local people. In particular local young children are very excited about the German students coming to Clarksdale and enjoy playing with them. Moreover, local functionaries visit the group and talk about the current situation as well as ongoing structural problems in the region. Thereby, the students are supposed concern the