[Strawbale] help wanted - natural building in south africa

Catherine Wanek blackrange at zianet...
Mon Apr 30 23:46:30 CEST 2007

Hello all -- I received a request to post this search for 
professional help to the natural building community.  Please reply to 
Wendy Cross (address below.) - Catherine Wanek

I am the new Program Director for NextAid and have recently returned 
from spending the last year volunteering on our project site in 
Dennilton, South Africa.  ........ We've made lots of progress on our 
earth-friendly children's center in the last year.  We now have 
completed 6 structures: 2 earth-bag offices, a thatch/ earthbag 
performance center, 3 compost toilets, an outdoor kitchen with 
seating area and our first children's house made of straw-bale.  We 
are gearing up to complete our first phase of construction and really 
take the building to the next level.  In order to do this we really 
see the need to find a South African architect to collaborate with 
and a general contractor/ site supervisor with natural building 
experience to live on-site long term (at least 6 months). I am 
attaching a brief description of the project and the two 
positions.  Is there a way you could circulate or post this 
announcement to the BWB community?  It would be so helpful.
  Best regards,  Wendy

Architectural & Building Help Needed on Sustainable Children's 
Village and Community Center Project in Dennilton, Limpopo Province

NextAid seeks an Experienced Architect or Group of Architects to help 
guide construction on the Youth with a Vision Village in the rural 
town of Dennilton, Limpopo Province.  The construction is being 
funded by NextAid, a Los Angeles based humanitarian organization 
dedicated to creating sustainable solutions for African children 
orphaned by AIDS.  The village is being built with an emphasis on 
natural building techniques and "green" practices.  The sustainable 
village will serve as a multi-purpose center for the community to 
operate education and micro-businesses as well as housing for 50 
children orphaned by AIDS and their caregivers. Currently under 
construction are offices, residences, water facilities, cooking and 
eating facilities and a performance space.  Currently being designed 
are children's residences, an economic/educational center, other 
auxiliary structures, gardens and sports fields.  We seek a long-term 
commitment.  The architect would collaborate with an international 
team of architects, including lead Natural Builder and Architect, 
Joseph Kennedy, and with natural builders on the design and execution 
of the construction process.

NextAid is a grassroots organization operating on an extremely 
limited budget.  Ideally we are looking for individuals or a firm who 
would take the project on a pro-bono/ volunteer basis, but we are 
open to negotiating for the right candidate.  We offer a 
life-changing opportunity to help create a center that will support a 
wonderful and loving community currently suffering from the ravages 
of AIDS and poverty.


In addition, we are looking for a Site Supervisor/General Contractor 
type person to live on site for extended periods of time during 
construction.  This individual would lead the team of local builders 
in supervising the construction.  This individual will be offered 
on-site accommodation and a typical salary for this position in the region.

We are looking for someone with the following qualities:
    * Open-mindedness, flexibility, patience, people skills, self-sufficiency
    * Interest in teaching and sharing knowledge
    * Ability to live in modest, sometimes challenging conditions (or 
commute to project site)
    * Able to read and follow to-scale architectural sketches
    * Experience with all phases of construction
    * Experience with scheduling and working with subcontractors
    * Experience with estimating and ordering materials
    * Experience with straw-bale, earth building, Hydraform blocks 
and/or other sustainable building techniques
    * Ideally someone with plumbing, carpentry and electrical experience
    * Computer skills: email, excel, etc.
    * Knowledge in Zulu/ Sotho would be a big plus!
    * Social consciousness and respect for different cultures and 
traditions is essential.

For more information about NextAid and to see photos of the 
construction progress go to: <http://www.nextaid.org/>www.nextaid.org

If the position meets your interest, please contact:
Wendy Cross, Program Director
Email: <mailto:wendy at nextaid...>wendy at nextaid...
Cell: +1 415.624.7303
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