Tacloban - Bagacay Housing Project

By supporting Project Bagacay, you help provide low-cost permanent shelter for families affected by the two super typhoons, Haiyan and Hagupit, that hit Tacloban City, Leyte, Philippines. 


Project Bagacay is a community-driven, volunteer-backed initiative that provides assistance, through green architecture and sustainable-settlements planning, to families in Tacloban City that were displaced by Typhoon Haiyan in 2013, and then hit again by Typhoon Hagupit a year later.

The beneficiaries of the project are families that come from the Anibong district, the area where big shipping vessels ran aground and which has now been declared as a No-Build/No-Dwell Zone.

Today we are helping them build homes in Barangay Bagacay, ten kilometers north of the city center,  as part of the Brigham Estate Socalized Housing Project.


Typhoon Haiyan (local name: Yolanda), the most powerful typhoon recorded to hit land, ripped through Tacloban City on 08 November 2013. It brought titanic storm surges and strong winds that flattened entire villages and caused widespread devastation in agriculture and infrastructure, as well as unprecedented loss in lives and property.

Barely 13 months after Haiyan, Tacloban City was once again hit by another super typhoon, Hagupit (local name: Ruby). This significantly derailed the reconstruction and rebuilding efforts in the region, where millions had yet to recover from the previous year’s devastation.

As of October 2014, news accounts estimate that over 97 percent of the families displaced by Haiyan are still living in unsafe temporary shelters.  Surely, we can (and we must) do more to help them.


Project Bagacay optimizes the core strengths of its volunteer architects, engineers, and planners by providing assistance in:

1.  resource mobilization for the construction of permanent homes;

2.  house design and construction, including skills training of community-based workers and laborers;

3.  the setting up of communal/backyard edible gardens;

4.  community site planning; and

5.  facilitation of access to basic services (e.g., water, sanitation, power) and opportunities for livelihood and employment.

Your help will go towards item 1, the construction of permanent (and safe, decent, environment-friendly, and cost-effective) houses for around 50 displaced families so that they can finally start the road to recovery and community rebuilding.


We in Project Bagacay believe that “building back better” starts with GOOD PLANNING and DESIGN.

⊕  Good design is Earth-friendly, sustainable, appropriate to the local climate and landscape, and rooted in the local or vernacular culture.

⊕  Good design is simple enough to build, rebuild, and maintain using local skills and technology.

⊕  Good design is steeped in history and incorporates lessons from disasters.

⊕ Good design does not automatically mean costly or high-priced structures. Conversely, low-cost reconstruction and shelter projects should never be an excuse for poor or sloppy planning.

⊕  For good design to work, it must reflect the needs, abilities, and aspirations of the community. Thus, it is integral that the homeowners be at the front and center of all efforts, actively engaged, and empowered to make informed choices.

Help us to build back better.  Donate to Project Bagacay today!

(The Bagacay House Features)

After working closely with the community, Project Bagacay came up with a house model that is affordable, easy to build, climate-appropriate, and resilient to disasters.


The money we raise will go towards the construction of the Project Bagacay house.  Each structure is projected to cost ₱150,000 in materials, plus 10% for minimal monitoring and overhead costs, i.e. delivery of materials, bookkeeping, and transportation for on-site monitoring.

This brings the total required budget per unit to ₱165,000 (approx. $3,700).

The goal is help 50 families get safe permanent homes. To date, we have raised enough to build three houses. There are 47 more to go. Let's do this!  


For the record, Project Bagacay is not a dole-out project. Each recipient is required to have equity in their homes by participating as a builder during the construction period.  In addition, the homeowners also need to pay the following expenses, which are not covered by the allotted budget for each house: *

⊕ Lot acquisition amortization: ₱185,000
⊕ Site development amortization: ₱30,000
⊕ Labor cost for construction: ₱50,000
⊕ Utilities connection: ₱5,000
⊕ Septic tank system, painting, fencing, etc.: ₱10,000

*The quoted figures, totalling ₱280,000 (approx. $6,220),  are minimum amounts and may be greater, depending on various factors.


Why help these urban poor families rebuild their homes?   In four words: BECAUSE THEY HELP THEMSELVES.

These Anibong families did not wait for “free government assistance.” Instead, they put their fate into their own hands and, with other survivors, organized a socialized housing project that they will amortize in the next 25 years.

All our beneficiaries are legitimate, registered homeowners under the Brigham Estate Socialized Housing Project. Therefore, ownership of the land on which the permanent houses will be built is already assured. 

We also vetted these beneficiaries through visits, meetings and a community baseline survey. Their economic situation may vary— some households are headed by single earners, while some have at least two members with regular income— but all are in need of your help.

In addition to the financial commitment that they have willingly taken on, our beneficiaries also contribute their time and sheer muscle power towards the rebuilding of their homes. Project Bagacay has no hired staff – we all work as volunteers – so the beneficiaries, both male and female, do all the heavy lifting and mobilizing work on the ground.

How can you not admire their stamina and spirit? We certainly do – and we hope that you will become their supporters and advocates too. 

Dalen Palami (coordination, fund raising)
Bang de los Reyes (coordination, fund raising)
Minerva Cabrera-Rosel (house design and construction, site planning)
Albert Rosel (house design and construction)
Albert Dumlao (house design and construction)
Vic Dul-loog (site planning)
Nappy Navera (site planning)
Chris Layusa (land use planning, fund raising)
STEFTI Technical Vocational Center (house construction)

All 50 families, led by members of the Anibong Cluster Steering Committee: Rosario Bactol, Linda Lagario, Arlene Ibañez, Lorna Lagario, Virgie Lingan


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Gio Omega & Dalen Palami 
Los Angeles, CA
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