Posted on January 31st, 2018
It’s been over a year since HYT started work in Kadungulu, training 10 youths in interlocking stabilised soil block (ISSB) technology. The project may have finished, but the graduates of the training programme have only just begun their careers as eco-friendly masons.
Charles, Max and Sam have made the 200 km trip to Jinja to take part in building the new resource centre for J.E.T. at St. Patrick Primary School. They’ve joined a team led by their old friend and trainer Eric Mposa.
Eric is not the only familiar face here in Jinja, however. Andrew and Penney Billington, founders of Billington Vocational Training Centre where the graduates were trained, made their own 6,000 km journey to the site in November. The Billlington’s funded the programme in Kadungulu, and were pleased to see the team using their new skills.
The Jinja team is impressed by how quickly Charles and his friends are picking up English and Luganda – both foreign languages for them! At HYT, lessons continue far beyond graduation, and projects provide opportunities for masons to learn, as well as earn. The Kadungulu cohort has been practicing ceiling construction at St. Patrick, as their skills begin to go through the roof!
Max has also used the project to hone his decorating skills, shaping the plaster carefully around the exposed brickwork. This attention to detail helps to publicise the technology, ensuring beautiful structures with visible blocks!
Of course, the children of St. Patrick are the most important beneficiaries of the project. When the resource centre opens next month, they will have access to their very own library and computer services.
Charles, Sam and Alex are proud to take part in a project with such a positive impact. As HYT masons, they will go on to transform the lives or pupils across Uganda, building futures with their own two hands.
Posted on December 14th, 2017
2017 has been the most exciting year in HYT’s decade of working in Uganda. While the highlight was perhaps winning the prestigious Ashden International Award for Sustainable Buildings, we have trained our first women builders, undertaken a large rainwater tank project and have seen HYT working for the first time in Mabira’s spectacular but endangered tropical forest.
“The benefits of this scheme go way beyond the environmental impact – reducing deforestation and curbing CO2 emissions through a low carbon building technique – and encompass health, training, employment opportunities, even access to education”
2017 Ashden Judging Panel
Winning the Ashden International Award in June was a tremendous accolade marking international recognition for the One Village at a Time training projects. The judging panel was impressed with the holistic approach to HYT’s work, where young Ugandans are empowered with new skills, school communities are transformed and the fragile Ugandan environment preserved.
“HYT’s model is a simple one but is scalable and robust” 2017 Ashden Judging Panel
We are determined to make the most of the award and already have exciting plans for the new year, including constructing a model development in Mabira forest, which will showcase HYT’s innovative approach to training and low-cost, environmentally-friendly building. HYT is already working in Mabira, one of Uganda’s last remaining large rainforests, where we have installed water tanks for communities in the forest.
“A truly unforgettable experience and a beautiful country”
The Haileybury school trip in October saw 20 Upper 6th girls and boys visiting a range of HYT sites, seeing in action our innovative approach to building, meeting the team and developing a deeper understanding of what we do and why. We hope these young men and women will stay interested supporters of the charity. They seem pretty enthusiastic from what they say here:
“I was amazed to see how the HYT staff were working constantly and efficiently in the Ugandan heat”
“What interested me most about the Uganda trip and what I enjoyed most was getting to know the HYT workers and seeing firsthand what they do”
One site visit by the Haileybury students was to RAVO (Refuge for Aid Victims and Vulnerable Orphans). Thanks to the funding by a private donor, these children at the margins of Ugandan society now have a roof over their heads, clean toilets and ready access to water. These are things that we take for granted but are not so in one of the world’s poorest countries.
“Uganda was an unforgettable experience which allowed me to witness first firsthand the value of HYT to communities across the country”
The Trust has just completed a project jointly funded by HYT, the Rotary Club of Marlow, its sister clubs in Europe and the Allan and Nesta Ferguson Trust. By installing water tanks and latrines in four rural schools, 1,727 children will benefit in all kinds of ways from this transformation to their schools. Improving water and sanitation facilities meets one of the Sustainable Development Goals.
HYT meets several of the United Nation’s SDGs:
HYT has trained 23 new masons this year, making a total of 114 since 2006.
HYT has employed more than 50 graduates across its sites in 2017!
In 2017 HYT has saved:
708 MWh of embodied energy, the equivalent of burning nearly 260,000 kg of coal.
114 tonnes of firewood.
24 mature trees like this one:
The ‘One Village at a Time’ project remains at the heart of HYT’s activity. We are proud to be well into double figures, having trained more than 100 young Ugandans, giving them new skills, new opportunities and for many, new work. We are now nearing completion at One Village 11 in Kayembe, where the training team is developing skills with yet more Ugandans, while transforming the local school, sustainably.
It has been a year of growth, achievement and excitement from which the team can take a great sense of pride. It has been a year of success. But there is much more to do. With your support, HYT will continue to empower more Ugandans and transform more communities in 2018 – and beyond.
Season’s Greetings from us all.