Thursday, May 22, 2008

Collaboration




Precast on site using local labor

Pamoja Trust is part of a group called Slum Dwellers International (SDI), which was actually started through the support of SPARC (Society for the Promotion of Area Resources) in Mumbai, India. SPARC was one of the collaborators with Urban Typhoon workshop in Dharavi that I attended. SDI is established in a number of Africa countries, and uses information exchange to better support poorer community groups in urban areas to improve their living conditions. In the Kambimoto project, Pamoja Trust used some technology developed for slum upgrading in India. Using small, precast pieces of concrete, the technology not only makes a sturdy house, but is also something that can be done by local community members. This is just one small example of the benefits of such information exchanges.

The benefit of this is that community members are learning skills throughout the process, as well as earning money. The current construction foreman was low skilled at the beginning and did not originally show much promise. This is certainly one of the most difficult components to actually get right, and continue to invest in. While this is an intention of many groups, rare is it to find those that are actually doing it well.

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