We often hear from people all over the world that are looking at straw bale construction as a solution for creating healthy, affordable, safe and beautiful housing. For many of the people we hear from, this type of housing is not an easy option so we love the sense of excitement people feel once they realize that really CAN build their own cost effective and beautiful home. Over the years, we have donated hundreds of DVDs to individuals, organizations, charities, and schools around the world to help empower people to create their own housing. We believe that everyone deserves good, sound housing to raise their families in.
Recently we made a new friend in Kenya who contacted us excited about the potential of straw bale construction to create homes for the people of Kenya. He is studying construction technology in college and is looking for solutions for the housing struggles that he and many others have had to deal with. We were heartened by his commitment to create housing not only for his family and parents but also on a large scale for other Kenyans. This is his story in his own words:
My name is Simba Geoffrey. I am living in the western part of Kenya: Kisii county. I come from poor household, below the poverty. In my life have never had a chance to live in a nice and habitable house. When i was young I and my 4 siblings used to sleep in a neighbor’s kitchen some distance from my parent hatched house that had a lot of openings on the roof. As I grew had been dreaming that I will be a solution to my parents, me and the rest of the world by providing them with better house that are eco friendly and uses locally available material.
Most house in Kenya are build using mud and grass or iron sheets. We have convectional houses but they are expensive to build and of late we are running short of building material. For example to get sand you need to travel 50km from Kisii to Lake Victoria to get it. To me it seems little is done to get habitable house to middle and low income earners.
Friend of mine introduced me to straw bale construction. As am trying to start building alternative material for construction after finish my college-I am studying building construction. I hope to use straw bale for construction.
If straw bale will prove to be good building material and through educating Kenyans they may adopt it. Straw bale construction will give Kenyans an alternative means of building. It will assist Kenyans to access affordable rental houses built using straw bales. Also I am working to see if I can use soapstone, earth, recycled bottles and plastic to build houses. I am looking forward to being the person in Kisii to build with and to teach straw bale construction.