Mud to Mortar Savar, BANGLADESH

PROJECT OVERVIEW: Since 2014, Mud to Mortar has been providing long-lasting, durable, and easily cleanable floors as a strategy to improve the sanitary conditions of the home, reduce the risk of building collapse, and ultimately increase the resiliency of vulnerable families in the region of Savar, Bangladesh. ARCHIVE Global’s dual intervention of flooring improvement plus an education campaign creates long-lasting change. Besides being an effective way to decrease diarrheal diseases in the household, these floors provide economic benefits by: minimizing the medical costs associated with parasitic and bacterial infections, significantly adding 22-46% to the value of the home, and increasing the community’s resilience against recurrent challenges, such as flooding, cholera outbreaks, and other hazards. Training families in sanitation and hygiene concepts that are simple and cost-effective provide health benefits—for example, washing hands by pouring water out of a vessel rather than washing hands in a vessel. These points highlight the potential that design interventions have to prevent disease transmission and to promote health literacy and economic development in vulnerable communities.

CATEGORY: Civil Society SETTING: Urban STATUS:Completed

By: ARCHIVE Global

COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT: The families of the Savar community are an integral part of this project in multiple ways: The families will be beneficiaries of our project by receiving new concrete floors; At least one household member will be contacted to conduct pre- and post- renovation surveys; Family members will attend one sanitation and hygiene training class; Family members are expected to partake in sweat equity by transferring the construction materials from an agreed-upon drop-off point to their house, to ensure that the material is secure until construction, and to participate in the construction process if available. The boarder community will be invited to participate in awareness workshops to increase their knowledge about the risk of infectious disease and housing, as well as best sanitation and hygiene practices.

PARTNERS: Association of Development for Economic & Social Help (ADESH) is the local implementing partner acting as our eyes and ears on the ground and has a close relationship with the community. Grimshaw Architects - The firm has partnered with ARCHIVE to research alternative materials and construction methodologies to ensure our floors are as cost-effective, resilient, structurally appropriate, and sustainable as possible given local conditions. BRAC University James P. Grant School of Public Health (BRAC JPGSPH) - The School has partnered with ARCHIVE to conduct a quasi-experimental study to evaluate project impact.Housing and Building Research Institute (HBRI) - has acted as an advisor to test and cost alternative construction techniques, and train masons in these innovative methods.