Housing has become an important public issues in almost all societies. Housing condition of a nation manifests the country’s socio-economic development level. It also bears upon the maintenance of privacy, health and development of normal family living conditions. On the other hand it influences fertility by encouraging or discouraging family formation and affects mortality through health problems.
Housing conditions have major public health importance. Healthful housing is one that satisfies the basic physiological and psychosocial needs of human beings and does not expose them to environmental hazards. The World Bank estimates that over 50% of the third world population livesin shelters that do satisfy the basic needs of housing. The usual practice for measuring of crowding at household level is to determine the number of persons per room and space availability in terms of floor area per person.
In Ethiopia about 86% of the population lives in rular areas in a traditional hut. Measurement of the hut’s size, however has never been made when the houses are built. This makes it difficult to assess the health effects of crowding. The basic housing needs such as safe water and sanitation have low coverage in the majority of housing units in rural population representing 14.8% and 5.91% coverage, respectively, presenting favorable environment for the transmission risk factor for the propagation of respiratory infection. This was associated with increasing number of persons per room and high level of indoor air pollution.
Better housing facilities are part of development and empowerment of a society. The major purpose of empowerment is build human capacity to strengthen their ability and enlarge their choice to overcome the causes of their exclusion and suffering. The Eade (1997:24) development is about woman and men becoming empowered to bring about positive changes in their lives, about women and men becoming empowered to bring about positive changes in their lives, about personal growth together with public action; about both the process and the outcome of challenging poverty, operation, discrimination; and about realization of human potential, through social and economic justice. Above all, it is about the process of transforming lives, and transforming societies.
Yegeter Media Host Rahel Shibabaw having this vision for long has taken a prior action of informally survey through discussions with some of male and female model farmers in western Gojam regarding the idea of modern housing. She has developed the idea of involving in that sector and helping them through the process.
The mission of the rural housing project is to contribute to the living standards of ruler people by helping decrease the risk factors of poor living conditions.