Home Improvement in Brasil

Mejorando la casa en Brasil

Amelie Estrada, architect from Ecosur Nicaragua and Diego Coloma, technician from EcoSur Ecuador, visited the project "Home Improvement" (Caprichando a Morada in Portuguese), implemented by the Rural Housing Cooperative COOPERHAF in Chapecó city, state of Santa Catarina, winner of the World Habitat Award 2009, granted by the Building and Social Housing Foundation.

The main objective of the project "Caprichando a morada” is to develop sustainable solutions for small and independent farming families all over the country, with an approach that involves the habitat and food generation, including housing as the starting point. Between the complementary objectives, is included capacity building and organization strengthening of farming families, increasing the knowledge and understanding that housing is a right and that rural workers deserve to live with dignity, discussing topics related to the social division of work and the role of women in decision-making processes, helping to generate additional income to small farmers through the establishment of cooperatives and emphasizing in the importance of production for self consumption

Mejorando la casa en Brasil

As usual, small innovations that solve the basic needs of people living in precarious conditions are those that produce the best results.
The shortage of potable water on the site is remarkable, so, a rainwater collection tank has been developed. It uses a sand filter as a basic form of purification, and stores enough water for cooking and other basic household needs.

Mejorando la casa en Brasil

The highlight of this visit was the relationship between COOPERHAF and the Central Bank of Cresol who finances lends to the beneficiaries that can`t pay the counterpart  of the contribution.

Housing is only the starting point to COOPERHAF to help environmental , economic and social sustainability of the small farmers who are the principal targets of this project.

For all this, COOPERHAF won the World Habitat Award, started in 1985 by the Building and Social Housing Foundation as a contribution to the International Year of Housing for Homeless of the United Nations. These awards are given annually to human settlement projects that provide practical and innovative solutions to the actual problems of housing in all the world.
More information: Building and Social Housing Foundation, www.BSHF.org

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Bernardo RhynerBernardo Rhyner
Swiss - Canadian
Spanish, English, German and some French.
Construction with ecomaterials, implementation of housing projects


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